Monday, September 29, 2014

Cruising

IMG_4759.jpgAfter our outing at the USS Midway we drove across a super long bridge to Coronado Island. We heard that Hell Week might be going on at the naval base near the beach we wanted to visit.
IMG_4768.jpgThings were hopping at the beach. We couldn't see anything happening at the base, but we did see
IMG_4770.jpgseveral different aircrafts fly overhead. Some flew surprisingly low, which was kind of awesome.IMG_9765We had to get some sun on our last full day of vacation, right? We stayed until we got hungry. Then we were off to explore Coronado Island and all its cute little shops.
Got our burger fix. #in-n-outAlso, since we were in California I had to get my In-n-Out Burger fix and this definitely hit the spot.
_MG_7084.jpgAmong other activities our hotel also had a nightly cruise around the bay. We hopped onto the cruise just before the sun was setting and the evening couldn't have been more perfect.
_MG_7090.jpgFrom afar we could see Mission Beach and the old roller coaster at Belmont Park.
_MG_7080.jpgThis is the view as we headed back to the hotel.
_MG_7096.jpgWe cruised around for a couple rounds listening to the live musician and drinking fruity, girly drinks. Okay, maybe I had the girly drink and my Lutheran Stud had a beer. :)
_MG_7102.jpgThere's something calming about being at sea when the evening is quiet. It's refreshing and the perfect way to wrap up our time in San Diego. We don't have plans to return at the moment, but I think it will rate high on our list when we plan another trip.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

The USS Midway

IMG_4754.jpgA person can't lay on the beach forever, so we decided to check out some sights while we were in San Diego. The USS Midway Museum received rave reviews on many tourist sites I had researched, and it had me curious to know what all the hype was pertaining to this ship.
IMG_4651.jpgThis tour was fantastic! From standing on a real aircraft carrier to seeing navy planes up close, to listening to past military men's stories about living on the aircraft carrier, this tour did not disappoint.
IMG_4657.jpgWe were given the option of taking an audio tour while we walked around. The audio tour gave a little history about each plane or section that we visited. Much of the history was told by airmen that had flown or lived on the ship. It was fascinating to hear first hand experiences from men that have served our country.
IMG_4658.jpgHave you ever wanted to see Tom Cruise's Top Gun plane up close and personal? I don't think this exact plane was used in the movie, but it's the same model of plane used in the movie.
IMG_9780There were times that I lost my husband because we were so engrossed in listening to the tour while walking around. We did find each other a few times. ;)
IMG_4667.jpgIt was crazy to see the amount of planes that can fit on this aircraft carrier. The USS Midway was the largest ship in the world for a decade and also the first ship that was too large to fit through the Panama Canal. It is 1,001 feet long and 258 feet wide, hence the reason I couldn't get a photo of the entire ship. The flight deck alone covers 4.02 acres.
IMG_4672.jpgThere were docents all over the ship talking about how things ran and worked on the ship. This guy was awesome! He was stationed on this ship and told the best stories. His main presentation was to share how planes landed on the flight deck. It's a pretty amazing operation that they run on a ship like this. He said planes landed every 45 seconds which means there was very little room for error.
IMG_4675.jpgCan you imagine flying a huge plane only to have a short runway in which to land and having wires like this to stop you from flying back into the ocean?
IMG_4686.jpgAdmiral Dan March was part of the Midway's last mission, Operation Desert Storm. He shared experiences from that mission.
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There were maps used from the mission in the war room. It was a little surreal to see it left this way considering I was in 7th grade when this war happened and I still remember it.
IMG_4692.jpgPeople have actually worked from these desks.
IMG_4694.jpgThe radar was actually on when we walked through.
IMG_4716.jpgA small chapel can also be found on board this huge ship.
IMG_4717.jpgAfter seeing the chaplain's sleeping quarters my husband was sold on joining the navy, especially after seeing the privates' sleeping quarters.
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It's a tight squeeze, here, for the men at the bottom of the totem pole which is also where they slept, pretty much on the bottom floor of the ship. Yikes!
IMG_4725.jpgThe kitchen, on the other hand, was quite roomy. Take a look at these soup pots. 10 tons of food or approximately 13, 500 meals were served daily on this ship. Can you imagine?
IMG_4729.jpgMy favorite thing in the kitchen was this mixer. I wonder how many cookies I can make in this bad boy.
IMG_4720.jpgIf you were a higher ranking official your food was served on silver.
IMG_4736.jpgChief petty officers were also served fabulous meals. The rest of the crew didn't eat this well.
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The chains for the anchors measure 2,000 feet and the anchors weigh 20 tons. Men new to the ship were often put on anchor duty and if you made it through that you knew you'd survive living on this ship.
IMG_4714.jpgJust in case one had to abandon ship there were survival capsules.
IMG_4713.jpgHave you read the book Unbroken? If you haven't, you should. It's an incredible, true story about Louis Zamperini and his survival at sea after his plane got shot down during the war in 1943. Anyway, this capsule reminds me of the capsule described in the book. It's something you can never forget after reading about it.
IMG_4709.jpgThis unbelievable ship would house 4,500 crew at one time. It amazes me to think that they could fit that many men on one ship. I still can't fathom where they all fit, even though we could see all of their sleeping quarters. If you're in the San Diego area be sure to put this ship on your list of  places to visit. If you love learning about the history of our country this ship will teach just that!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Beach, City, and Baseball

imageOur hotel has a private beach, so when I finally rolled out of bed, (my husband got up and worked out at the gym before I woke up), it was time for brunch. We decided to stroll along the beach over to Mission Beach to see what we could find.
imageWe ended up at this cute little place right on the beach. We sipped coffee while eating breakfast outside, and taking in the view of the ocean waves.
IMG_4642.jpgAfter brunch we decided that some relaxing beach time of tanning and people watching was just what we needed. The weather was perfect!
_MG_7031.jpgWe lounged around the beach just long enough for my husband to get a little pink coloring on his pale, fair skin. The Rockies were in town playing the Padres, so we started a Craigslist search for tickets and scored some great seats with parking too. With a meet up time downtown to pick up the tickets it was perfect timing for us to do a little exploring around the city. I love walking around bigger cities. It's fun to see the different characters of each city. Someone had to get ice cream at Ghiradelli. Can you guess who?
imageAfter we picked up our tickets we realized that we hadn't eaten anything since brunch so we stopped into the Stone Brewery Tap Room right next to the stadium. If you love IPAs you'll LOVE this brewery. IPAs are a little too hoppy for me, but I did love the flatbread pizza that went well with my beer. :)
_MG_7033.jpgWe're huge baseball fans, so naturally when our favorite team was in town we had to go, right? Okay, so maybe we planned it that way. We've always wanted to travel around and check out other ball parks, so this was the perfect chance.
_MG_7036.jpgNot that I've been to many ballparks, but what I think makes Petco Park unique is the sand box they have for the children to play in during the game. How fun is that?
_MG_7037.jpgThere's also a grassy knoll for a cheap place to sit during the games. While the view of the field isn't great from here, this huge screen makes up for what you can't see from the hill.
_MG_7039.jpgWe walked around the stadium before making it to our actual seats. That guy in the field is former Rockie, Seth Smith. He was one of my favorite players.
_MG_7043.jpgI think their screen is similar to the one at Coors Field.
_MG_7068.jpgWe finally made it to our seats. Check out that view!
_MG_7074.jpgAt this point in the game we thought we had a chance to win. Our team was scoring runs. If you don't follow baseball let me fill you in by telling you that the Rockies are pretty much the worst team in baseball right now.
_MG_7075.jpgThere was a little hope, but then. . .
_MG_7077.jpgthe Padres began scoring more runs and Charlie Blackmon is all, "C'mon guys! We've got to hold them." Maybe that's not what he's saying, but maybe he's giving them a pep talk?
_MG_7078.jpgThe Rockies didn't end up winning, but we had fun checking out Petco Park and downtown San Diego.