Posted tagged ‘Waterloo’

” I don’t want to sound pretentious, but I love art, I like to go to museums, and I like to read books.”

March 12, 2013

The morning started poorly. First was a call at 8:15 which woke me up. I didn’t answer, and the party didn’t leave a message. No self-respecting person calls before nine. Ann Landers would have been horrified. Luckily, I fell back to sleep, woke up close to ten, leapt out of bed, washed face, brushed teeth, got dressed and left, before morning coffee, to a fasting blood test. I mumbled and groused the whole way. Afterwards, I got coffee at Dunkin’ Donuts and treated myself to a lemon donut then came home and read the papers. That brings us to now.

What about the weather you ask? Well, let’s see. It’s damp and, of course, it’s cloudy. Outside my window is grim: dead leaves, brown and grey branches and the clouds, always the clouds. I am going to change into my cozies and stay home the rest of the day. I have no ambition and I don’t care.

I am a member of the Museum of Fine Arts. I seldom go, but I like supporting the museum. It is my parents I can thank for giving me and my sisters and brother a love for museums. I remember going to the Peabody Museum at Harvard and seeing the outrigger hanging from the ceiling. I also remember the ape heads in jars. They were my favorites. Kids like gross stuff. The Museum of Fine Arts had the sarcophagi, and I loved that room. The Mummy had always been a favorite movie, and I imagined Imhotep having been buried alive in one of the sarcophagus on display at that museum. How neat it would have been to see him dragging his wrappings as he moved through the museum’s rooms.

On my first weekend in Accra during training, I went to the National Museum and dragged a couple of friends with me. They balked a bit, but I convinced them that a museum is always the best first stop, the place to learn more about a country’s culture and its past, but at that museum I was amazed to see so much of the present displayed as artifacts of the past. The exhibits of regalia and traditional cloth were historical, but they were also contemporary. You could still see the same cloth being worn, especially the kente and adrinka, mostly by men all around Ghana, a country of traditions.

I  have a fun memory of a museum we, my sister, my parents and I, went to in Belgium, in Waterloo. We paid our money and went inside the worst museum any of us had ever seen. The roof leaked, and there were puddles of water along the floor and in front of the exhibits, but I use the term exhibits loosely. There were half-dressed mannequins, poorly done drawings of battles and imitation drums and swords. All we could do was laugh. We had been bilked. Luckily, though, we later found the real museum. I remember being horrified by the tools the surgeons used and I remember Wellington’s bed. I was surprised he was so short. I expected him to be much taller, maybe even a giant.