I had previously visited Balboa Park during Spring Break when I was out for my internship interview. Erich and I visited the Mingei International Museum upon Susan's recommendation.
I had an enjoyable walk to the museum from my car. The weather was beautiful: warm, sunny and not a cloud in the sky!
For about an hour and a half I wandered around the museum. My favorite painting had to be The Young Shepherdess by William-Adolphe Bouguereau.
Maybe it was because it was something about sheep or fiber related, but it just struck me as a painting I needed to constantly go back to study! Or maybe something about her reminded me of myself. I found a postcard of the painting in the museum gift shop for a dollar, so I decided that was a good souvenir. Interestingly enough, I didn't notice until long after I left Balboa Park that the very same girl was on the visitor sticker I received upon paying admission!
On a critical note, the museum was smaller than I imagined it to be. Perhaps I am spoiled with the Phoenix Museum of Art or the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City. I left the museum at about noon. I couldn't decide if I wanted to spend money on a lunch at the museum's cafe, or if I wanted to just get a snack at first. As I exited the museum, the bells were playing Pachabel Canon. Soon after they played Fur Elise and following that Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah! There was some sort of children's camp event happening near the Lily Pond.
I sat there for a bit, gathering my thoughts, taking a few photos and enjoying the atmosphere. I decided to go back to a a small coffee bar I had passed before going to the museum. I got a cappuccino and an apple to nibble while I continued exploring the park. I walked towards the Natural History Museum (an adventure for another day!) and found the large fountain. I had to call my Mom a couple of times just so that I could get some of my excitement out.
As I continued walking around, I discovered that I was going toward the San Diego Zoo entrance. That put things into a little more perspective of where I was. After walking back toward the fountain, I went through the Spanish Village Art Center.
If I had not had a drink in my hand, I would have explored there more, but I didn't want to accidentally spill my coffee on anyone's art. It's highly unlikely I would, but I didn't want to risk it. I did see an outdoor glass blowing demonstration. Actually, I think it was a lesson, but still very interesting to watch! I want to go through there again (without a drink) so that I might explore the studios a bit more and maybe even purchase some art!
Before I left the park, I went into the Timken Museum of Art since it was free. They did not allow pictures inside. I wish they had because there was an image of a plaza in Venice that looked terribly familiar to me. I ended up calling Mom again to ask if it was the one she and my Dad had visited on their cruise and it was! I knew there was a reason the painting looked so familiar; I had seen a photograph she took of St. Mark's Square!
After going through that small museum, it was about 2:30. I decided it was about time for me to leave Balboa Park because I had a class to assist teaching at my internship in a few hours.
I simply cannot wait to return for another adventure in Balboa Park!