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The Metropolitan Museum, an Expanse of Art so Rich and Vast it Alters My Sense of Time

Updated: Nov 28, 2021

There is no way I could see all of the museum in a day. My senses and mind would overload. It's enough to make me want to live in New York City again. I could take one room a day, sit and absorb it, write about it, let it infuse me. The relationship between space and time has always been fascinating; at the met you can experience it with the whole body. At 78 I'm grateful for those benches. I'm grateful with the cafeteria on the ground floor with its excellent food. Yesterday, spicy salmon rolls.

I am convinced there are rooms in the Met that I've never been in. I know there are secret rooms in the walls. I went to visit a friend who worked there as an archivist. She said meet her at a particular spot and a certain time. The wall literally opened up and out Mary came. Then the wall closed behind her. There are rooms inside rooms.

The people who work the galleries there are quite lovely. I think one of the prerequisites for the job is an ability to tell someone how to get from, say, the American wing to the Lehman Collection quickly and expertly. Or where to find a bathroom almost anywhere. Or, how to get out of the museum when one is completely lost and exhausted. Bam! Magic: there it is.

When I arrived there at 10 A.M. Tuesday, there was already a line of fifty people waiting to get in. I talked with a young man in line, who was code-switching in Spanish with his wife. He had never been there and I began to praise it. I said, finally, that he shouldn't try to see the whole thing in one day, even if he were only in New York for a visit. I said, "It's like chocolate fudge cake; you eat one slice and it's so good you want to eat another. But by the time you're on your fourth slice you realize you can't go on. In fact, you have to sit down and let the sugar surge through your system. It will make your dreams vibrant.

By eleven o'clock, the place was packed. It is of course Thanksgiving week. One of these days I want to splurge and get an upgraded membership so I can go during special hours when there are only a handful of people there.

I heard several languages while I was there. Japanese and Vietnamese, French, German, Spanish and Portuguese, Arabic and Hebrew. And of course some I couldn't recognize. The place is a wonder. I am grateful to it. I'll go back as long as I can breathe.

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