170 days away
2 km / 1 miles since last post
60,519 km / 37,605 miles total
We needed a bit of extra sleep this morning so didn't bother with the alarm. We're both still not sleeping great in New York and I'm still not sure why. Surely sleep apnea can't be the reason they call it 'The city that never sleeps!' Still, it was nice to have a bit of a lay-in this morning.
We got breakfast at the diner next door to the hotel again, and then decided to go back to our hotel room to start looking into our accomodation in Vancouver. We fly there on Tuesday and haven't sorted anything yet!
We are looking to rent an apartment for our first week in Vancouver. We have had lots of discussions about what we want to do when we get there, but I think the first thing on our list is to relax. Whilst it will be tempting to start venturing out the moment we arrive, we are running short on energy after travelling for so long - particularly now we are in New York where you have no time to relax at all. Plus, Stu is very anxious to get up to speed with his business. So, we have decided to take things really easy - at least for our first week in Vancouver. We can venture out in our second week, and besides, we plan to return next year so it's not as if we are missing anything that we won't see eventually.
We have contacted a few people about possible apartment rentals, but the rest is a waiting game to hear back from them. Stu was still feeling tired so decided to take a nap after going through the Vancouver plans. We weren't wasting time being in the hotel for a couple more hours, as our plans today were to visit The Guggenheim Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art - both of which have late opening hours on a Saturday.
After Stu had had sufficient rest we headed out and got the subway up to Central Park West. It was now raining out (although we had expected this, which is why we planned a day of museums). However, when we arrived at The Guggenheim we saw a very long queue stretching from the entrance and around the side of the building. The queue did not look appealing, particularly due to the rain.
As we took our place in the queue we were debating what to do. We both really wanted to go in and see the museum, but we didn't really want to stand in the rain for too long - and there seemed to be no sure way of knowing how long we would be waiting here for. We had got here around 5:30pm and the museum would be closing in two hours.
Stu decided to walk to the front of the queue to see if he could find out any information. When he returned he pulled me out of the queue and to the front. It seemed we had joined the wrong queue. Because we have the New York Pass, not only could we get in free but we could also walk straight into the museum and not have to queue. Thankfully we had only be standing there ten minutes!
Once inside we took advantage of the free audio tour headsets, then started our walk through the museum.
The first striking thing about the museum is actually the building itself. It was designed by renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright, and is one of the 20th century's most important architectural landmarks. The walk through the museum actually takes you round in a spiral as you ascend around the outside and to the top. It's strange because you don't really feel yourself walking up, but it's a pretty cool view from the top down the centre of the museum.
The pieces on display were quite good, some a lot more appealing to us than others - the audio guide was really helpful as it gave a greater insight into some of the pieces than supplied by the text on the walls next to the artworks. The museum is the permanent home to a collection of Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, early Modern, and contemporary art with other special exhibitions. Of particular note were some pieces by Seurat and Picasso.
After leaving the Guggenheim we walked across Central park in the rain, and found our way to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Yet another incredible building, but a lot bigger than the Guggenheim. We were sure right from the start that we wouldn't get to see all of this place tonight. Its permanent collection contains more than two million works of art, divided into nineteen curatorial departments. The main building is apparently one of the world's largest art galleries.
The 'Met' contains a vast array of artworks, from classical antiquity and Ancient Egypt, paintings and sculptures from nearly all the European masters, and an extensive collection of American and modern art - as well as extensive holdings of African, Asian, Oceanic, Byzantine, and Islamic art. Of particular interest to us was the extensive Egytian art collection and the Arms and Armoury section - including armour worn by King Henry VIII (yes it did look a bit like a fat suit.) We also managed to catch some works by Picasso, and I was also very chuffed to see the massive Dali painting 'Christus Hypercubus'. However, it was around this time that we were informed of the museum being about to close. We just managed to skip across to the Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas section before finally being pointed in the direction of the exit. It was a shame we couldn't have seen more as this museum was amazing, but it was also incredibly huge. It was handy it had a 9pm closing time though.
As we headed out into the night it was now absolutely chucking it down with rain. We walked as quick as we could back through Central Park to get to our subway line. However, despite both wearing waterproof jackets and having an umbrella, we still got pretty soaked. (Stu was not happy!) Thankfully the subway train took us to a station right next to the hotel, so we didn't have far to walk after this.
We had grabbed a bite to eat in the museum so we didn't need to venture out again tonight. Stu decided to warm himself up in the bath before bed.