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Times Square

I got to go to New York City this past weekend!

As you may know, Dartmouth divides all its students into one of several housing communities. Different professors head different housing communities and throw various events for their members using school funding. As a member of West House, I get to enter lotteries to go on weekend trips to Boston or New York City. Each trip happens once per year. This year, the annual Boston trip happened in the winter term and the New York City trip happened in the spring. Students sign up using a lottery system, with around 60 seats available for West House members and their guests. 

Since there are limited spots and limited trips, this was my first time getting to go on any West House trip (even as a senior). I had visited NYC once before, actually just last winter, and was super excited to go back. Even though I grew up in the suburbs, I love city living and being surrounded by lots of people. It makes me feel really alive, optimistic, and driven in a unique way. Therefore, I was super grateful to be able to go!

On the West House trip, most group expenses are covered by the school including the transportation, hotels, arts and culture tickets, and a few meals like breakfast and dinner on the way back. As a low-income student, I was also given a stipend to cover a couple other expenses, such as dinner and lunch in town.

We left campus around 8AM on Saturday morning. This year, West House bought orchestra seats for everyone on the trip to see Hadestown during the Saturday matinee, as well as tickets for the Metropolitan Museum of Art on Sunday. I've known of Hadestown since 2018/2019 and love Eva Noblezada, so I was extremely excited to see the show. I also had never been to the Met and I love learning about art, so I was also super grateful to be able to go to the museum! Outside of these two activities, I got some Korean BBQ at a restaurant called Jongro with my roommate Saturday night and explored Times Square and the theater district on my own, picking up a Hadestown postcard for my twin sister (who might actually beat me in my adoration for musical theater).

Sunday morning before the museum, I walked over to Chelsea and explored the neighborhood for a bit. Though Chelsea Market was theoretically open by the time I got there, none of the individual shops were accepting customers yet. I guess I'll just have to go another time! I left the hotel around 7:45AM and came back around 9:45AM to put my luggage in the correct location and have some Dartmouth-sponsored donuts before heading back out, this time to Central Park. There was actually a half-marathon happening that Sunday, which made it super fun to walk around the park. It was heart-warming to see all the supporters cheering on the runners. I then met everyone else at the Met around 11AM, where I stayed until we had to leave at 3PM. I think I was able to walk through most of the exhibits, but that museum is way too big to adequately see in one trip. While waiting for the chartered bus back to Hanover—which was having an extremely hard time navigating NYC the day before the Met Gala—, I also walked along Madison Avenue, stopping in several places to window shop. 

The trip ended with some pizza on the road back and lots of great memories. It is really fun to escape Hanover for a bit during the term, as great as Dartmouth is. I am very grateful to the school for providing such opportunities like this, and for our faculty and staff who lead students on these adventures, trust us to roam the city, and manage to keep us all safe.

If you ever have the chance to go on a school trip, I highly encourage it! What do you think would be your favorite part?

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