The easiest way to get me to go on vacation is to ask. The easiest way to get me to go on a last minute vacation is to put a few drinks in me and ask. I have booked multiple vacations under the influence of alcohol only to wake up and go, “oh well, I guess I am going to Baltimore to the see the Backstreet Boys” or “oh well, I guess I am flying to New Orleans.” Most recently, exactly two weeks ago, I was drinking and was asked if I wanted to go to Boston. I said, “when?” and they said, “next weekend” and I said, “sure!”. So I booked a hotel and drove on up to Boston seven days later.
We stayed at the Boston Marriott Cambridge. It was a nice hotel with nice rooms, but I really hate two things about it and I try to avoid this when I book hotels (I did not choose the hotel, I booked where everyone else had already booked). First: if I am paying for a room in your hotel, do not make me pay to park my car. This room wasn’t cheap and I am not really sure where the money went since the Marriott has a thing about not changing sheets and reusing towels, which I get, but if you are scrimping and saving everywhere else, then let me park my damn car. Second: no free breakfast. There was a nice buffet, but it was not free. Again, if I am paying for breakfast, paying to park my car, and you aren’t changing a damn thing in my room (also, no fridge), then why is my room so expensive?! Furthermore, the hotel was in Cambridge. Cambridge is fine, but it’s Cambridge, not Boston. I had to take a cab or the T everywhere. It wasn’t some hot spot in the center of Boston. It was down the street from MIT and there were no bars or restaurants anywhere to be found. I really don’t understand what the expense was for and the lack of complimentary services at the hotel. Basically, it was nice and clean, but it wasn’t worth the money. If I am going to get hit with expenses like that, I want to be staying on the Freedom Trail.
So I arrived first, but this adventurer wasn’t going to sit in her hotel room and wait for everyone else. It was nighttime, dark, and I’m not familiar with Boston, so I didn’t want to aimlessly wander, but I wanted to see something. I have this cool book filled with 36 hour trips throughout North America, so I flipped to Boston and looked to see what it recommended. It suggested the Museum of Fine Arts and I love art, so I hopped in a cab and went to the museum. It is open late on Fridays, which is great, but I happened to be there on the first Friday of the month, which is a party night there. I did not join the party as I had no idea it was happening, but I did get to take advantage of hearing music throughout the museum all night and one friendly security guard asked me why I wasn’t in there dancing because I was so “dressed up” (I was wearing jeggings and a henley). Well, I wasn’t in there dancing because I wanted some culture. Also, it is a decent sized museum and I only had a few hours to knock it all out, which I was determined to do since I spent $25 to get in.
I began in the ancient cultures section. It was two floors of ancient Egyptian and Greek art and artifacts. It was beautiful. I was especially fond of the Greek/Roman section because marble sculptures are my absolute favorite form of physical art. Below are some of my favorite sculptures, but I want to note that not all were from the ancient Greek exhibit; some are American sculptures. I didn’t note who did what, so I am not giving credit to anything or anyone and I apologize for that, but I’m pretty sure all the artists are dead and they probably won’t sue me.
If you’ve read my posts before, you will know that I identify as pagan. I don’t practice any religion, but I definitely am spiritual. There were rooms here, especially in the Egyptian art section, that I felt like I was walking into somewhere sacred or that the artifacts in them had no business being removed from their original places. This museum does a really cool job of recreating rooms or temples, homes, and other locations of the time period they are representing. The first room that I walked into like this was in the Egyptian section and there were two smaller rooms that had the walls of two peoples’ tombs, and then in the middle, there was an archway with a few statues of a queen that I cannot remember the name of, Ramesses II, and Bastet.
I could not stay in this room long. I actually went in before I left a second time because I needed to see if what I felt was still there. I walked in and immediately felt like I was intruding. I could feel energy in there that wasn’t unwelcoming, it just didn’t feel right. I immediately got the feeling that those pieces didn’t belong. I wanted to single-handedly return them to Egypt to live in peace. I know modern day Egypt is not ancient Egypt, but I felt like they just should never have been moved in the first place. I had to leave the room and then was drawn back in the room because there was energy in there that wasn’t anywhere else. The only other room that gave me any type of emotional reaction like that was the overtly Christian room in the European art section that featured this statue:
Not pictured here is the painting of Jesus’ crucifixion on the wall next to him. This room was powerful and I couldn’t stay in it because I felt like I was being punished. The Catholic guilt that I have so successfully stored away deep in the parts of my brain that I tend to ignore pushed its way into the forefront of my mind and I immediately texted my pagan aunt telling her how miserable everyone is in the artwork depicting Christian scenes. This room made me feel fear. The church bullying everyone over the last thousand years fear. I probably overreacted and I am sure this picture doesn’t demonstrate it, but the presentation was incredible and I walked in, stared that knight in the face, and got the hell out of there.
The European art section featured some other really incredible exhibits and pieces. As mentioned in previous posts, my favorite era of painting is Impressionist art, and they have a significant exhibit dedicated to that. There is also a great display of pottery, tea cups, table settings, furniture, and musical instruments from different eras in European history. Another great section was the Asian, Pacific, and Oceanic exhibit. Here is sculpture of Ganesh, everyone’s favorite chubby elephant god:
I don’t know who this lady is, but she looks pretty terrifying:
There was a contemporary art exhibit, which for the most part was dumb and a waste of space because when you glue garbage together or put a plain red square on the wall it is not impressive or worthy of my time. If you hang a piece of denim from the ceiling and make me walk around it and don’t put anything else inside I am not going to be impressed with your creativity, I am going to pissed I walked around a piece of material hanging from the ceiling and saw nothing cool. There was one piece in this section that was cool though. I am going to put the picture in, but I am not going to explain it because I don’t want to take away the only thing that made this exhibit worth entering. You can go check this one out for yourself. It was on the second floor if you don’t want to waste your time walking through the first floor of contemporary “art”.
Here’s my little rant about contemporary art. Yes, I fully understand that art does not have to abide by certain rules and art affects everyone differently. I make art. I make art that speaks to me or helps me at certain points in my life. Sometimes my art is good and sometimes it sucks, but it doesn’t matter because I do it for me to make me feel a certain way. I get that and I am sure that the art in this section made the artist feel a certain way when they made it, and that is amazing, but that does not mean that this shit belongs in a museum. I don’t put my crap in a museum and expect people to be inspired by it. I know it is shit. So, contemporary artists, get your shit together, get your heads out of your asses, and stop being so damn conceited. I am not impressed that you hung lights from a ceiling, that you pieced together scraps of metal, or that you painted an oversized dish and hung it on a wall (all things in the exhibit). It does not take skill. I’m happy you are expressing your emotions, but do it privately. Some contemporary artists do have talent, like whoever created the piece above, but there are exceptions to every rule. Leave room for pieces of art that take talent. End rant.
I ended the night in the American section. I present you with two Presidents and all around impressive gentlemen:
I just swelled with American pride when I saw him standing there. And then I thought about America now and I died a little inside, but I tried to push that back into the part of the brain with the Catholic guilt, picked myself up by my bootstraps, hailed a cab, went back to the hotel, and prepared for the next day.
Part 2 will be continued when I am not fighting sleep. I shall be back to continue the tale of my less than 48 hours in Boston!
Good night and Slainte!