Day 16 - San Diego
Saturday, February 2, 2013: Sunrise in San Diego was beautiful, ...
|... especially when facing the patriotically lit USS Midway museum.
|But we had to face the inevitable: it was time to get off of the ship. Debarkation was delayed by an immigration process that started late and took longer than expected, and then delayed further by passengers who somehow didn't think that they also needed to go through the immigration process.
|But finally, we did get off the ship, then we got our luggage, stored our luggage at our hotel across the street, ...
|... walked to the rental car agency, and drove north to Oceanside to ...
|... Legoland! Since visiting the original Legoland in Denmark nearly 10 years earlier, we had wanted to visit the American version.
|It was bright and colorful and we were going to see as much of it as we could in under two hours. Let's go!
|Here's a jungle ride featuring giraffes, zebras, ostriches, ...
|... and this family of lions.
|Harry Potter and Hagrid.
|This was a musical fountain with LEGO instruments.
|This Las Vegas display was under renovation so this shot over the fence was all we got.
|This series of buildings was all devoted to New York City.
|Here is Central Park's Naumburg Bandshell, ...
|... the Guggenheim Museum, ...
|... a cross-section of Grand Central Station, ...
|... some New York City streets, ...
|... and some cool detail at the base of the Bertelsmann building in Times Square.
|Here's the French Market and Cafe du Monde in New Orleans, ...
|... with a recreation of Mardi Gras in the French Quarter.
|Here's the Hollywood Bowl ...
|... and Graumann's Chinese Theater. Click here to see the Danish model.
|Here are the Griffith Observatory and the Hollywood sign.
|Here's San Francisco's Chinatown.
|Here's a little waterfront town, ...
|... with barking sealions. Hidden speakers made sealion sounds so it was easier to figure out what they were.
|Star Wars! Yesssss! This was the highlight of the park for Tom and we photographed pretty much everything. It's not all shown here, because we like to pretend that Episode I didn't exist.
|First, the sidewalk flanked by large versions of Star Wars minifigs: Darth Maul, R2-D2, Chewbacca, Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Wicket, Leia Organa, ...
|... and Darth Vader.
|Let's get a closeup of the Millennium Falcon.
|"Sandpeople always ride single-file to hide their numbers."
|"Hey, this R2 unit has a bad motivator." We could narrate these displays all day.
|Here's the Cantina in ...
|... Mos Eisley.
|As we approached the amazing Hoth display, a little kid ran up to the model and yelled, "Hey, there's the good guy climbing up!" That's evidence of good parenting right there.
|Here's the wampa's lair on Hoth, with a tiny Luke Skywalker hanging upside down.
|Seriously, this model was just so cool.
|Here's Endor. No need to get any closeup of any pesky Ewoks.
|In the pirate-themed section, we passed this fun water-fight ride, and got a little wet ourselves when the riders decided to aim the waterguns at the spectators!
|Here's a cute little ride in the knight-themed section.
|Now THIS is a dragon! The wings weren't made of LEGO, but everything else was.
|This torture chamber of a ride looked terrifying and fun. The screams of the riders was entertaining for onlookers though.
|Behold! A righteous throne for Ms. Schilling!
|Egypt in LEGO form. Nice.
|Here's a Bionicle-themed ride, ...
|... and a Duplo-themed play area for the little ones.
|We only went on one ride, the Coast Cruise.
|It passed the awesome LEGO animals in the jungle area, such as this elephant that spouted water, ...
|... and these pelicans and flamingoes.
|Our main purpose for riding this ride was to get a closeup look at the models of famous buildings. Here's a beautiful shot of the Sydney Opera House model, ...
|... and here's one that is much less beautiful but much closer to the photo we took of the real thing back in 2000.
|Here are the Taj Mahal, ...
|... Eiffel Tower, ...
|... Mount Rushmore, ...
|... and the Statue of Liberty.
|We browsed the gift shops and then were on our way, out past the not-quite-yet-finished Legoland Hotel.
|Next stop: beer! Debbie's friend Gordy had posted a photo from Green Flash Brewing Co. a couple of weeks earlier, so we decided to check it out.
|Oh, my. So many choices. Many of them were IPAs, so after eliminating each of them, we ended up with ...
|... five brews to try, at $1 per sampler glass. From left to right: East Village Pilsner, Friendship Brew, Park West Porter, Serrano Chili Double Stout, and Barleywine.
|We enjoyed all of the beers, with Debbie preferring the spiced ale in the Friendship Brew and Tom enjoying the Serrano Chili Double Stout, a unique taste with a nice amount of heat.
|The Bitchin' Burgers food truck was onsite, so we paid a ton of money for ethically sourced, organic, free range, hand made, blah blah blah, burgers and fries. We felt very Californian.
|We were just a block or two away from Gen-Probe, a company Tom has visited several times on business trips. As many times as we had each been in San Diego, this was our first trip together.
|Next, we visited the home where Debbie lived when she was little.
|We freaked out the current homeowner who scurried in the house when Debbie asked if it was okay to take a photo of the place.
|We passed the community pool and Debbie had to get a photo of the amazing variety of stuff that would die in our Indiana weather.
|Tom had never been to the famed Gaslamp District, so Debbie took him on a tour.
|First, we peeked into the US Grant Hotel, home of one 4D training class trip and one 4D conference for Debbie.
|This is charming and likely historic.
|Here's a typical street. We didn't stay long, nor did we venture all the way down to the Hard Rock Hotel where Debbie had been for a different 4D summit.
|We dropped off our rental car and checked into the Holiday Inn. We had a nice view of the harbor from our 12th floor waterfront room. Here's the USS Midway Museum to the left, ...
|... our beloved Celebrity Century across the street, ...
|... and Anthony's Fish Market and the Maritime Museum to the right.
|We settled in and then set off for dinner and the Maritime Museum. Here's the beautiful Star of India waiting for our visit.
|But first, let's eat! Anthony's Fish Market has an outdoor food stall, Anthony's Fishette, which is similar to Ivar's in Seattle. We loaded up on a tray of tasty seafood - shrimp and crab cocktail, ceviche, clam chowder, and a fish-and-shrimp combo.
|While dining, we watched the Century back out of her berth and depart for Hawaii.
|After dinner, we headed to the Maritime Museum. Here's a photo of the HMS Surprise, but first, ...
|... we headed onboard the Star of India.
|Here's a first class cabin, ...
|... the first class dining area, ...
|... and the first class dishes.
|This deck was a large museum ...
|... featuring all kinds of fascinating things ...
|... and interesting models of old boats, showing the different rigging of various classes of ships.
|Here's a steerage-class cabin, ...
|... and the steerage-class bathroom.
|This end of the ship contained many manly, nautical things.
|Here's the upper deck of the Star of India, ...
|... and here's Tom ready to tour the HMS Surprise. (Again! He toured it in 2005.)
|Let's take a tour.
|Here is a nice cabin.
|This spacious room is the captain's quarters and was used as a set in the movie "Master and Commander."
|Here is where the crew slept and ate.
|Here's the outside of the captain's quarters.
|Right next door, the B-39 Russian sub was standing by for our visit.
|This unique entrance left no question as to exactly what level of flexibility would be required of potential visitors. Can't make it through this? Then you can't visit. End of story.
|We could do it, so down we went.
|What are those big tubes for?
|To shoot these giant torpedoes, of course!
|Here are the captain's quarters, ...
|... and the radar room, ...
|... and the bathroom (or the head, as it is called on a ship).
|Goodness, that is a lot of valves.
|Darn papparazzi! They are everywhere!
|Here's the kitchen, ...
|... and the horrid little cots where the crew slept.
|This is probably something useful.
|We briefly peeked into the steam yacht, Medea.
|Our last stop was the USS Dolphin, nicknamed the Triple Nickel. It is billed as the US Navy's last diesel electric sub.
|This battery water tank was painted to look like a Coors beer can.
|Here's the radar room, ...
|... and here is some submarine stuff.
|The periscope worked and was aimed right at the San Diego airport.
|Here are the officers' quarters, ...
|... the bathroom, ...
|... the kitchen (galley), ...
|... and the dining area (mess).
|This sign was hilarious: it contained instructions on how to do a software restart.
|More submarine stuff.
|The Star of India looked beautiful against the San Diego skyline. We dropped a little cash in the museum gift shop on a wall hanging and book, and headed back to the hotel.
We went to bed early since we had to be up at 4:00 AM the next day for our flights back to Indy via Houston.
** THE END **
Copyright © Deborah Schilling/Thomas Bundy