Part 1 of our Philadelphia adventure is here: Philadelphia
So we were off to a decent start after a rough night. We arrived at the Franklin Institute with enough time to get parking in their lot, pick up our tickets at Will Call and get in line. I am so glad that we got such early tickets because there was absolutely no wait to get in to either the museum or the King Tut exhibit.
The exhibit was amazing! We just wrapped up a year long study of ancient Egypt, which included studying King Tut specificially and watching several documetaries from NetFlix on the discovery of his tomb. Our studies more than prepared us for what we were seeing, and helped me to explain and paraphrase things for Boo and Pumpkin Girl. I was very disappointed that taking pictures was not allowed – we even had to turn off our cell phones and beepers. The ambience of exhibit was carefully constructed with lighting and subtle music. We started off in well lit rooms with treasures of some of Tutankhamun’s ancestors. Displays on the walls helped to establish the political climate that exhisted prior to Tut’s rule and how it effected his reign. This was all familiar to us already which made it even more exciting.
One of my favorite pieces was the coffin of his great-grandmother and her funeral mask. I like her little smile, like she’s just happy to be here.
The next few exhibit rooms were devoted to Akhenaten and Nefertiti. Their treasures were equally beautiful, but then it was time for Tut. The excitement grew as the rooms darkened and the music became more mysterious. We climbed a ramp that led to rooms filled with Tut’s treasures.
It would take me all day to describe everything we saw. Articles that were found on the mummy itself, statues, toys, every day items were all on display. This coffinette, only about 14 inches tall was just exquisite. I could have stayed and looked at it all day. It is inscribed (in hieroglyphics, of course) all over the inside and it once held Tut’s mummified internal organs. Tutankhamun’s famous funeral mask was not included in the exhibit because it is no longer allowed to leave Egypt. I knew this before hand, so we weren’t too disappointed.
Don’t worry, I didn’t take any of these pictures myself.
Two hours later, we were finished with the exhibit. We were all glad that we saw it, all except poor Bip. He was in such a foul mood from having not slept well. He whined through about half the exhibit, not wanting to be in the stroller or in either my sling or Philip’s. He even starting crying until we threatened to stick him in a corner by himself while we finished walking around. Fortunately he didn’t realize we couldn’t actually do that and he quieted down. Eventually he fell asleep in Philip’s sling.
The exhibited conveniently deposited us right into the Tut gift shop. We spent a small fortune, mostly because I couldn’t leave without a hardcover copy of the exhibit catalog. By then Bip was awake and hungry, so we went down to the museum cafeteria, where we spent another small fortune. Actually, it wasn’t that bad and I was able to find something non-fried, yet tasty for myself.
After spending a little more time in the rest of the museum, we took off for New Jersey to see my friend Carol. There we were in NJ and I didn’t make one Sopranos joke. Nope, I made three. Just couldn’t help it. We had a great time and Carol made us her famous chicken parmesan for dinner. Yum! Our children had fun playing together and somehow Boo got attacked by a sprinkler and ended up soaking wet. Fortunately, this was after dinner and we had already planned to put the kids in their pajamas for the ride home.
Our ride home was uneventful, which is always a good thing!