The Best in Life is often Free, or Reasonable: Part 1

With the advent of some financial changes in my life, I have had to put a check on the spending. Usually by this time of year I am pretty broke, and a good thing too, otherwise it might be really hard to get me to go back teaching.  After 18 years, I am getting weary.  It gets harder and harder to go back to work after the summer off (though I do work-just for myself!) 

We've taken a hit...with Larry not having a photography class this semester.  Whether it is bad luck, or students not interested in old fashioned darkroom photography, the result is the same. Loss of a chunk of change.

Though I do not live "high on the hog", I have become accustomed to having what I need or want, and going out, and making the occasional trip.  Until I get a grip on my finances, and do a budget to see how much money there is for frills, I am keeping a tight grip on my wallet.

My recent trip to NYC was not hampered by my lack of money.  In mapping out our adventures, my friend and I used three criteria to plan: 1) since it was 95+ degrees out, it had to be close to her Chelsea apartment. We were not walking in the heat.  2) it had to be free, or close to it.  3) it had to have air conditioning. 

Having done my homework, our first adventure was to head over fashion and textile history museum at FIT.  Current exhibition is Eco-Fashion-Going Green which examines the impact that the textile industry has had on the environment, such as the chemicals used in the production of fabric, and the near extinction of some species of birds during the Victorian era, when hats sported the feathers of exotic birds. 

Each article of clothing/accessories had an icon that related to the following themes: re purposing and recycling of materials, material origins, textile dyeing and production, quality of craftsmanship, labor practice, and treatment of animals. 

The museum was quiet considering the students were in their first week of school. Perhaps they were too busy purchasing books, getting settled in their dorms, and milling about the city.  It was all the better for us, as we poured over the amazing collection of clothes from the 1700's to present, some of which I drooled over, and I left thinking about how inspiring the show was, and how necessary for me to make my students aware of how to "be green" in their choice of clothing.  (for example, the average person buys 84 lbs of clothing a year, a majority of which goes to landfill in the end, and many of the synthetic fabrics do irreversible damage to the environment!!)

The only down side was that I was not allowed to take any photographs inside of the gallery.  I am going to find out if I can get special permission as an educator so that I can use the photos for visuals in the classroom. 

I may be back to the show again. 

Part 2 to follow: The Chelsea Hotel



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