Wednesday, April 25, 2007

"OOPS!" "OUCH!" "OOPS!" and another "OUCH!"

I am all for class trips that take advantage of what New York City has to offer, but sometimes it may just be better to stay in the classroom with the door locked and a large sign hanging on said door reading “DO NOT DISTURB”.

That day was today.

We were all very excited this morning because for the second day in a row we were “going on a trip”. Yesterday we went up to Columbia University to see a production from Little Theatre of the Deaf which went off without a hitch. So, today as we prepared for our trip to The Metropolitan Museum of Art we naively believed we would enjoy ourselves, learn something, bond as a community of learners and get back by 1:30.


First mishap…

Our tour guide got us lost in the American Wing as we tried to find our way to the New Greek and Roman Galleries.
I think she did this on purpose because although I assured her that my students were experts on the heroes and heroines of Greek Mythology, she expressed her opinion that it was too sophisticated for them. Well, we followed her through the maze of rooms and hallways, up the elevator and down the steps, back into African Art. By this time the children were getting restless and playing “don’t step on the cracks”. This meant that they were looking down rather than straight ahead of them. You know where this is going? Just as I was telling them to watch where they were headed I hear a loud “WHACK”


One of my beautiful little girls smacked her head right into the corner of a glass display case. I scooped her up and asked our guide where to find the first aid station. She suddenly knew exactly where she was and 'guided' us there. All the while we were followed by onlookers asking if the girl was okay in about four different languages.
I was afraid to look as we glided down the stairs and though the door to an unfortunate nurse, who, I am sure, was not following her bliss as a nurse at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. She gave us ice for the bump (no cuts or blood – Whew!) and we made our exit. The bus was waiting by now and we had to get back. As we departed our guide told me that she was glad we couldn’t make it to the New Greek and Roman Galleries anyway. Sweet.

I am not finished.
Second mishap...

We get on the bus. All is well. Until…

A woman in a Jaguar tries to squeeze past our school bus and does not quite make it.


We come to a standstill at a very busy intersection. Our sweet (really) bus driver gets out and starts yelling at this woman who was clearly in the wrong. She is wedged between the right side of the bus and a construction blockade. The driver’s side mirror on her beautiful Jag was hanging. No damage to the bus other than scrapes. The children were fine – slow speed, low impact – we actually didn’t even know it happened. The woman manages to get out of her car and is joined by the bus driver. I turn to my co-teacher and sign “It is pretty bad to smash into a school bus but when she finds out it is a bus full of deaf children she’ll probably feel even worse”.

The police come, EMS comes and reports are filed. However, one student tells EMS that she bumped her head when we stopped and she now has a headache.


Long story short…I spent the next three hours in the emergency room with her waiting for her mother to show up. All ended well. She is fine. I am back home.
Tomorrow we are NOT taking a trip.


SaraSkates said...

EEK! Yeah, close the door today Gary. It's great to see you in blogland!! - Sara

Joy said...

I think you should write a letter to the Met telling them about that 'guide'. How dare SHE decide what your kids are capable of understanding?!!

And, of course, some days you really do need to just STAY HOME and hide out until the wacky vibes pass!

What a day!

Christopher said...

My elementary school field trips were never this adventurous!...

...and I agree with Joy regarding that so-called "guide"...she definitely needs to be put in her place.

J. David Zacko-Smith said...

WOW! What an adventure - I think teachers are some of the most intrepid folks ever!

Reya Mellicker said...


The Metropolitan Museum has some of the weirdest feng shui I've ever felt. It smells moldy in there to me and I'm always alarmed at the mummies. It seems so disrespectful the way they have them lined up on display.

When I'm in NYC I avoid that museum like the plague. The Whitney is great, though, and MOMA, too. Can't imagine having a class full of children along with me during a visit to the Met. Glad you survived intact!

Gary said...

Reya,funny you should mention The Whitney - we are going there on Tuesday to study symbolism in art. Wish us luck.
(Also going back to the Met in May - ever hopeful...)

d. chedwick bryant said...

I think you got all of your accidents out of the way for at least six months or so-- all kids bump into things .
and that Met guide has got to go!


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