on October 31, 2006
Tut ExhibitWhen the first exhibit toured the US, I was never able to visit it. When I heard that a new exhibit had been mounted and would be visiting Chicago and Philadelphia, I was ecstatic: finally I would be able to see it. Even before the get-together was planned for Chicago, my girlfriend and I were planning to visit to see Tut. Plans changed, the get-together came up, and Al and I headed out Saturday morning to meet up with the other guides.You can get to the Field Museum on the Trolley Tour, on a regular bus, on the L (though it is a pretty good walk to the stop), or, as we did, on the way there by cab. From our B&B, with tip, the fare was $10. We did not tour the rest of the museum, so I can’t tell you if it is worth a visit. I do want to go on record as saying that the Tut exhibit was fabulous, but I am less than impressed with how the Field Museum handled the crowds that were visiting on that particular Saturday.Because we were part of a group, we didn’t have to wait in line to pick up our tickets. It looked as if they were trying to control the size of the groups entering, but they completely failed. As we entered the first room, people using the audio tours were stopping in front of the featured exhibits and totally blocking the view for anyone else. People were five or six deep around each and every exhibit. We were herded along like cattle, barely able to read any of the signs on the exhibits. It was extremely warm and stuffy, and frankly claustrophobic.We tried to move a little quickly to get ahead of the audio tour people, and for a while, it actually thinned out, but we never seemed quite able to get to an area where we could really enjoy viewing the amazing artifacts that had come from so far away and so long ago.To say I was disappointed is a vast understatement. I am going to have to try to see the exhibit when it comes to Philadelphia and hope that perhaps the crowds will be better controlled. I know one thing: I will not visit on a Saturday morning. I am hoping that by visiting on a weekday, I will be able to take the time to see and enjoy this long-anticipated exhibit.Like most exhibits, it ends at the gift shop, and they have plenty of the usual items packed into special Tut bags.
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