Columbia University in the City of New York

Yep, that is apparently the school’s full name. Maybe that’s why it needs to expand so badly, it needs to be the same size as its name.

Friday was another Manhattan bout of sightseeing inspired by a whim rather than a plan. The sky couldn’t make up its mind and I didn’t want to be caught in the monsoon so  I decided it was a ride to nowhere day. The M104 (side note: the history on the parallels between bus & street car routes is fascinating even if that article isn’t at all well written) came and I just decided I’d figure it out as I rode.

I realized it went past Columbia and thought why not? I’d only been there twice and it was somewhere I’d wanted to explore more. Despite being an NYU alum, I love the Columbia campus. I like the idea of a campus and a quad and a place to meet up that isn’t “find a table in Bryant Park”. So I could have spent 3 hours sitting on the Low steps just people watching. Even three hours wouldn’t have given me enough to explore the Morningside campus.

The architecture of the campus is amazing, I wish Low was accessible to the public because it’s inside is jaw dropping. In some cases, such as St. Paul’s Chapel, the landmarked building’s tell the campus’ story as you look at it. Had no idea it was founded by the Church of England or that its history was so extensive. And of course, it’s a Markeroni Paradise.

As iconic as Alma Mater is, I found the Revson Plaza art to be more interesting. Maybe because they haven’t been photographed to death and retain some elements of surprise. Especially as the sun is going down. What took me the most on the campus though was the shadow that the chapel casts on the Casa Italiana. Columbia is a beautiful urban campus, but the sun makes it even prettier.

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