Last week, I went to New York on a business trip. We worked from Wednesday to Friday and then I had Saturday and Sunday to do as I pleased. I ended up spending the day with a new friend on Saturday but by Sunday, I wasn't sure what I should do. I was tired, I had a plane to catch that evening, and I was very close to just staying in bed.
However, I was in a city that I'm not usually in. I didn't know when I would be back again. If I threw away my opportunity to explore because I was feeling a bit sleepy, I knew I would regret it. I threw on some clothes, put my makeup on, grabbed my cousin's Met pass and went out.
Since I wasn't going to be able to see Hamilton on this trip, I decided to look up the next best thing: a Hamilton statue. Coincidentally, or fortuitously, it happened to be right outside of the Met and I trudged through the remaining Snowmaggedon snow to take a look at the first Secretary Treasury.
I then made my way to the entrance of the building, sweating in my heavy winter coat in the 9 degree heat. I'd never been to the Met before and was wary about going in alone, figuring it would be completely overwhelming. However, I stuck to my guns, checked my sweaty coat, got my sticker to enter, picked up a map and entered.
Immediately I started scanning the map for the various exhibitions and what I would be most interested in. I knew that there would be absolutely no way for me to hit everything in my limited amount of time, nor was I sure I wanted to see everything. I decided I wanted to see the American Wing and the European paintings through the ages. Both those exhibits took up quite a large amount of the museum and I was hoping I would recognize at least something.
I was there for about 3 hours and I enjoyed every minute of it. Here's why.
I controlled everything. I went where I wanted, when I wanted. I stared at one painting for ages, while walking briskly past others. I took a lunch break when I wanted, and I left when I wanted. And it was incredible.
Of course, I couldn't control the people around me, but because I was in such a magical place, most people were wandering around with the same kind of reverence and awe that I was. We were all on our own separate journeys. Here is only a small fraction of the masterpieces I saw with my own two eyes.
The moral of the story is, it's okay to go off on your own. It's okay to enjoy yourself when you're out on your own. And it's okay to want to take that kind of time for yourself to just be.