I chuckle as I watch the desperate drivers, haunted looks in their eyes, hunt for a parking space. Suckers.
Everyone knows the Morse is home to the world's best collection of glassmaker Louis Comfort Tiffany art, but I decide to try something new.
The museum recently opened an Art Nouveau exhibit, and I spend a good hour nosing around it: A charming clock with the whimsical inscription "Prithee, what's o'clock," a handscreen made of lush peacock feathers, an earthenware wall sculpture titled "Die Nacht (The Night) Masque."
I want to stay longer and study the vases, candlesticks, figurines and jewelry. But I'm increasingly aware of the passing time. And, frankly, of my stomach.
I grab a quick sandwich across from the museum at Panera Bread — fuel for the trek back to Orlando — and head down the homestretch.
It takes about an hour to retrace my route back to Loch Haven Park. I can't imagine why but I seem to be taking a slower pace than in the morning. I take a cool-down lap around "The Big Dog Show," Dale Rogers' huge sculptures outside the Mennello, and then head inside.
It's 3:50 p.m. I have 40 minutes to view the African-American art exhibit, curated by the Smithsonian Institution. As in every other museum, it's just not enough time.
But it is possible to admire the scope of the exhibition, which contains nearly 100 works. Some are abstract, created by African-Americans, others are inspired by real life — the Ku Klux Klan, the Rodney King police-brutality case in Los Angeles.
Sculpture, documentary photography, paintings: The exhibit is a fascinating look at the history of a people. I feel a surge of hometown pride that our Mennello is one of only seven museums nationwide chosen to host the exhibition.
And then it's closing time. I did it. Seven miles, six-and-a-half hours, five museums.
I'm exhilarated. I'm sure the energized feeling is due in part to those endorphins workout fanatics are always raving about. But I have to think it's an uplifting of my spirit, as well, from the beautiful things I have seen on my journey.
• Orlando Museum of Art: 2416 N. Mills Ave., Orlando; 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, noon- 4 p.m. Saturday-Sunday; $5-$8; "Contemporary Glass Sculpture: Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Studio Glass" runs through March 31.
More information: 407-896-4231 or omart.org
• Cornell Fine Arts Museum: 1000 Holt Ave., Winter Park; 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, noon-5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday; free; "Collecting for the Cornell" runs through May 12.
More information: 407-646-2526 or rollins.edu/cfam/
• Albin Polasek Museum: 633 Osceola Ave., Winter Park; 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, 1-4 p.m. Sunday; $3-$5; "Life in the Fast Lane" runs through April 14.
More information: 407-647-6294 or polasek.org
• Morse Museum of American Art: 445 N. Park Ave., Winter Park; 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday and Saturday, 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday; 1-4 p.m. Sunday; $1-$5; "Lifelines," the Art Nouveau exhibit, is long-term.
More information: 407-645-5311 or morsemuseum.org
• Mennello Museum of American Art: 900 E. Princeton St., Orlando; 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, noon-4:30 p.m. Sunday; $1-$5; "African-American Art: Harlem Renaissance, Civil Rights Era and Beyond" runs through April 28.
More information: 407-246-4278 or mennellomuseum.com
• My route included Mills and Orange avenues so I could see what is was like to walk on such busy streets. Surprisingly, I didn't feel threatened by the zooming of the nearby cars. There are more peaceful options, though, by walking along residential streets.
• Riding a bicycle is also a fine idea. All the museums I visited have bike racks available nearby.
• An easier-on-the-legs itinerary would take in just the three Winter Park museums in one day. That would require traveling about a mile and a half, broken into three easy chunks. You could fit in lunch on Park Avenue, as well. Save the Orlando Museum of Art and the Mennello Museum for another day; after all, they are only a quarter-mile apart.