Our Upper Elementary students recently traveled to New York City and really got a taste of The Big Apple. The trip began in true New York style with students and adults rushing to make a performance at the Met. We knew that it was a crazy idea to go to the Met from the airport, but it was worth every bit of craziness!

We landed a little later than scheduled and went through a short train ride to the rent-a-car, and left efficiently on our way to Manhattan. We realized by then that we had to be even more efficient if we wanted to make it for the 7:00 pm curtain time, so utilizing the technological possibilities of our day, we ordered five pizzas from the car which were ready for pick-up when we arrived. The pizza snack was very welcome by all while we kept driving towards the Met. Upon finishing the snack, everyone started dressing so that we would be ready when we arrived.

Everything worked like clockwork and we arrived at Lincoln Center just a little after 7:00. But life is always interesting and when we were getting out of the car we noticed that some of the children were looking a little strange. One boy had pants that were at least six inches too short while another had pants that were a little on the long side! There was one who couldn't come out of the car because his shoes were not to be found. Unfortunately, the four children's belongings had gotten mixed up so the next 20 minutes were spent in a practical life exercise of
sorting clothes. In the end everyone found what they needed and felt much more comfortable! We had a good laugh and moved towards the entrance of the opera house where we were welcomed by the ushers who were impressed that the children were coming from Oakland
directly to the show. We were ushered into the the wide screen viewing room for late comers to enjoy the remaining portion of the first act of Julio Caesar. We then moved to our seats in the house for a spectacular performance!

We thought the children would fall asleep, but actually most of them stayed with the performance until the end of the opera, becoming more and more engaged in the story as it went by.  This particular opera is very special because it features roles for three countertenors and we had the privilege of hearing three of the world's most prominent countertenors. Clearly an experience of an opera at the Met is many notches above most other opera houses. From what we observed of our group, they were certainly engaged and enjoyed the experience.

As is customary to hear when we go out with our students, people around us were very impressed with our students' maturity, composure and engagement with the performance. We were asked many times who these children were and congratulated for their demeanor. The ushers and other patrons also commented on how wonderful it was to see young people properly dressed for the occasion.

Upon leaving the theater, we enjoyed a little stroll around the Lincoln Center Plaza with its beautiful fountain and then headed to the house we
will consider home for the next five days. Upon arrival we started the process of finding a place for everyone and everything we brought with us,while soup was warmed. Most everyone enjoyed hot soup and bread and dessert before going to sleep. Bedtime was certainly later than ever before, but our introduction to the Big Apple was spectacular!

The next morning, the students were awakened at 10:00 am and slowly moved through showers, breakfast, and some time to play. We left to catch the train at about 1:00 pm to go to the Natural History Museum where students spent the afternoon.

Coming soon--more exciting adventures from our New York City visit!