Dear Eiteljorg Museum,
Please accept my sincerest apologies. Since 1992, I've held a grudge against you and just this week, I realized how wrong I've been.
My negative feelings toward you can be traced back to a horrendous third-grade field trip. Memories of dull art galleries and the overwhelming feeling of being bored out of my pea-sized mind kept us apart.
But this week, you opened your doors for free, thanks to the 12 Free Days of Indy Christmas, and I'm a sucker for free.
Plus you lured me in with high expectations of Jingle Rails. My three-year-old and I are also suckers for anything miniature.
The verdict? Eiteljorg, you blew me away.
Jingle Rails was very cool. Madeline loved it all and was especially thrilled to walk underneath bridges as the trains chugged their way above her. My inner kid loved the tiny Yellowstone which included Old Faithful.
But the part that was truly amazing? The R.B. Annis Western Family Experience, a.k.a. the kids area.
When Katie the Third Grader toured your hallowed halls, you didn't have this. (Or if you did, I had very mean teachers who kept me away from it.)
Madeline and I absolutely loved discovering this exhibit. Everything is hands-on, from the totem pole waiting to be decorated and raised by little hands to the drums needing some loud loving to the stagecoach which rocks and bucks for an authentic riding experience.
After discovering just how cool you really are, I was kicking myself for not come earlier. We arrived at 4 p.m. because I thought we would be in and out quickly. Instead, Madeline was so sad to leave way too soon.And if I'm being honest, I was sad too.
You also scored super bonus points on my way out. I lost my cell phone and even though it was 20 minutes past closing, three extremely cheery staff members helped without making this scatter-brained mama feel guilty for keeping them late.
And the final two words: Free. Parking.
Way to be, Eiteljorg. Way to be.
You changed me from "not interested" to "totally want a membership." That's a big jump but I know now that you would be worth it.
I hope you can forgive me, Eiteljorg. Because I totally wanna be your friend now.