Monday, October 19, 2009

USS Midway

After attending the 55th year reunion of my high school class at my college room-mate's house in Corona, riding the Metrolink to the Union Station in Los Angeles and taking the Gold Line to Pasadena and back, visiting my brother in Yucipa and various other activities, I moved the coach to Santee in the San Diego area.

I spent one whole day at the 1,200-acre Balboa Park with 15 major museums and took about 300 photos, which I put into a slide show with music. They even have the Sprckels Pipe Organ, which is the largest outdoor pipe organ in the world. I took in an hour concert of a wide range of music on that amazing instrument. It was well worth the price of admission (FREE).

I also spent a most interesting day (5 hours) touring the USS Midway Museum which is docked at the foot of Broadway. I took the Green Line trolley to Old Town and transferred to the Blue Line trolley and got off at the Santa Fe Station and walked two blocks to the museum. I found a new display of 13 life-sized bronze figures situated in a tree shaded area that are clustered around a figure of Bob Hope. This is to commemorate his USO trips to entertain the troops. According to the posted information, this work of art took several years to complete and at a cost of $1.6 million. It is VERY GOOD and is worth the time to stop and see. The area is located in a small park just south of the Midway.

Here are a few of the 380 shots that I took while on the tour. I think I took the complete tour and then some, all the way from the Bridge to the Engine Room. I talked with several of the docents that had served on the Midway and learned even more than what I heard through the headset of the best tour information system that I have come across. The unit is about the size of a cell phone and all you do is punch in the 2-digit number that is displayed at each exhibit and you will hear about that exhibit. If you want to know more on that exhibit, you just push the PLAY button and you can hear stories about it from a person who actually used it or was there when it occurred. This system lets you wander around the ship and punch in the display numbers in any sequence that you desire.

If you ever get a chance go there, it is well worth while. They currently have about 35 aircraft on the flight deck. You can go inside several of the helicopters. Here are just a few pictures:

The plane that I had a close relationship with was the F-14 Tomcat.

You are able to see the M-61A1 gun.

Here are a couple of photos taken in the Flight Control Center that is located above the flight deck.

The served 13,500 meals and baked 1,000 loaves of bread daily.

There is just SO much more to see from the pilots Ready Rooms to the Captains quarters to the Sick Bay and Brig.

I had a great view of San Diego bay is from the "horn" on the boue of the Midway.

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