Sunday, February 13, 2011

Three museums, 2 pints and done

Last weekend in London so it's time to tick some boxes.  Here is the abbreviated version.

But first, "how's the weather"?  The Crocus came up this week.  I just like the name Crocus, like Hocus Pocus by Focus.  Love rock flute....

 The Imperial War Museum, London.

Fw-190, "Butcher Bird".  Another one of those machines that just looks right, even to non-geeks.  Must have golden rectangle proportions or something.  Let me check,
Yep, 1:18 (pretty close to 1:1618), 'splains it.

I know there's a lot of motorcycles and planes and such on the blog lately.  These are the things that I've know, or known of since childhood.  It's pretty amazing to me to actually see them in person. 

The real deal, the last of T.E. Lawrence's Brough Superior's.  Completely original and owned by a private collector.  Each bike was built to the customer's specification, including the configuration of the handlebars.

The second "Big Beautiful Doll" (P-51D) seen this trip.  Still lovely if not authentic.
The P-51 famously went from "drawing board to first flight" in 117 days.  Dutch Kindelberger at North American Aviation designed it to spec. for purchase by the RAF.  Curtiss was at production capacity with the P-40.

Quick lunch at the Three Stags (http://www.thethreestags.org/).  Organic, local sustainable and delicious!  Potato and watercress soup with a Hansens bitter.

Back across the river to the Natural History Museum.  This is the place you picture when you think of a museum.

Diplodocus in the main gallery.

Massive displays of geological specimens.

Inside the "Vault" a huge cut and polished meteorite of iron and Peridote.  I didn't take a picture of the 1,383 carat emerald. 

Mammal gallery.  Whales, elephant, mastodon, lions, tigers.....

Human biology and the 8 foot tall fetus (in a dark, warm room with muffled heartbeat sounds).  The creepiest exhibit ever.

Maybe not the creepiest. 
I spent most of my time trying to figure out where on spine my back pain comes from.

Stegosaurus skull.

No picture of the Science Museum building because it was dark already.
First man-made satellite to orbit the earth (careful with the claims to fame).

This interactive globe presented ocean currents, weather patterns, flights and other global patterns.  This is showing urban light pollution visible from space (considering what satellites photograph daily, the whole "seen from space thing" must be on borrowed time.)

Moon lander mock-up.

Model of the "Long Now" clock.  A self adjusting clock that will keep time for 10,000 years mechanically.  The full sized one is planned to be installed in Ely, Nevada.  The purpose is to promote long-term thinking.

Cierva autogyro.

Supermarine S6B racer.  Great grand pappy of the Spifire.

The Schneider was a famous seaplane race through the 1930's.  The planes that raced are legendary (to geeks).  Jimmy Doolittle won this trophy in 1925.  Later he lead the first attack on the Japanese mainland after Pearl Harbor.  FDR gave him the Medal Of Honor.  He was kind of important.
....Alec Baldwin played him in the movie.....

Quick run up to the Camden Locks (hadn't seen them yet) for dinner.  Tonight's category is "looks bad, tastes good"!  Stuffed pork loin and veg. with a Green King IPA.  Sunday roast.

Back on the train home.

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