After our disappointing lunch at momofuku ssam bar, we ventured to Battery Park to board a ferry. Our lunch letdown dampened our spirits a bit, but we didn't allow the weather do the same.
Unlike many people around us, we were prepared for intermittent precipitation.
And then we saw her.
But just as beautiful and wondrous.
As the clouds parted, a new feeling emerged.
In my romanticized mental version of history, this is what many immigrants felt as they saw the Statue of Liberty.
Our visit to Ellis Island, however, was educational and rather sobering.
The horrors immigrants had to endure back then were really something.
Among other things, I reeducated myself about the Chinese Exclusion Act and various quota laws. Did you know that, between 1943 and 1965, our country only allowed 105 Chinese immigrants a year?
And have you ever wondered how Asian-Americans became the "model minority"? I'll tell you my hypothesis.
The 1965 Immigration Act allowed seven categories of immigrants, one of which was professionals, scientists, and artists "of exceptional ability." If you're only letting in these folks, well, then your pool of Asian peeps is essentially the intellectual elite. And then, when these peeps procreate, their kids would be pretty bright, too, no?
Ok, maybe it's a stretch. But these are the weird things I ponder sometimes.
I appreciated that there were a few sections at Ellis Island devoted to Asian immigration issues, even though most Asian immigrants at that time came through San Francisco. Needless to say, I found these displays the most interesting because my public school textbooks glossed over all of this and focused predominantly on European immigration.
Next: Awesome stadium, awful food.