Late this evening I took a stroll through Balboa Park. As the nodding, golden sun bid the blue sky farewell, a smattering of telescopes began to sprout under the brightening moon near the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center.
Today is the first Wednesday of the month. That’s the day members of the San Diego Astronomy Association gaze at stars and the universe’s infinite beauty, and invite casual passersby to gaze up at the wonders. Young and old bend over to peer through eyepieces, and are awed by the craters of the moon, planets that happen to be swinging overhead, colorful nebulae and distant galaxies…
The viewing begins in earnest around eight o’clock, when the sky is good and dark, right after the Reuben H. Fleet’s planetarium shows the monthly “Sky Tonight” program on their big IMAX screen.
On my way to the Cabrillo Festival yesterday, I swung by Spanish Landing across from the airport to check out the San Salvador. As you might recall from my blog post from early last December, the San Salvador is a replica of the galleon sailed by explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo in 1542. The San Diego Maritime Museum is building it.
I was surprised to see the cool ship is nearly completed! Check out some pics I took over the surrounding fence! I spoke to a young volunteer who was working near the ship, and she told me the San Salvador is expected to launch in early 2015. The galleon will be sailing up the coast of California, recreating the historic trip by the famous explorer. And a documentary will be filmed during the voyage!
The peculiar-looking vessel will be able to navigate the open ocean, she assured me, and is ready to go today, but the folks building her are doing as much additional detail work as they can while the ship remains on dry land.
San Diego’s 51st Annual Cabrillo Festival was held today. Taking place at Ballast Point near the south end of Naval Base Point Loma, the event allowed the public to view a reenactment of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo’s entrance into San Diego Bay in 1542. Cabrillo, born in Portugal, commanded his voyage of discovery on behalf of Spain, sailing the galleon San Salvador up the west coast of America. In addition to the colorful reenactment, the festival included a short ceremony, speeches, costumes, National Park exhibits, food and dance provided by various cultural groups, and just a lot of interesting local history. I took some photographs. Here they are!
A short walk out to a point beside the bay provided a view of the San Diego Maritime Museum’s tall ship Californian, which portrayed Cabrillo’s galleon San Salvador.
I took pictures of two signs by the above fenced archeological site…
I headed back to the gathered crowd to await the main event…
In addition to the four national anthems, a moment of silence honored the Native American Kumeyaay, who lived in this area long before Europeans arrived. Cabrillo spent a few days anchored in today’s San Diego Bay, a place he originally named San Miguel. He took on fresh water and traded with the native Kumeyaay people that he met.
Warning! Some of the upcoming pics are pretty darn scary! You’ve been warned!
This morning I was nearly frightened out of my wits. I was taking a nice brisk walk up the west side of Balboa Park, enjoying the fresh air and at peace with the world…when I found myself surrounded! I couldn’t escape from silent ghosts rising from the cold ground all around me! A catastrophe! The horror! I had met my doom!
Oh, thank goodness, I realized at last. It’s just the Haunted Trail. You know, the yearly outdoor “haunted house” that’s extremely popular in San Diego around Halloween.
The spooky attraction, which brings in thousands of thrill-seekers on dark Autumn nights, is under construction once again. It’s larger than ever and looks super spooky. I walked around the perimeter and tried to get a bunch of cool daytime photos for you to enjoy. Here they are…
Okay, here’s a quick pic of some rather simple street art. I saw this colorfully painted utility box while walking up Bankers Hill a few days ago.
I love the symbolism in the image. A riot of small uplifting balloons whisking one’s home and carefully controlled life away on a carefree, restoring breeze was a theme that I really enjoyed in the Pixar movie Up!
Tomorrow I’m planning on a long walk. No telling where my legs will take me!
Do you love riding on trains? I do! Please take a ride with me on a cool restored streetcar that runs in a circle through downtown San Diego!
Here comes PCC 529 now, coming down the track toward the America Plaza trolley station! This beautiful President’s Conference Committee car was built in 1945 and is an example of the sort of transportation common throughout San Diego during that era. Streetcars have run through San Diego’s history since the 1890’s. Today they’re making a bit of a comeback with this Vintage Trolley, which runs on a downtown loop called the Silver Line.
PCC 529, before it was lovingly restored by volunteers, sat rusting under some pine trees in South Lake Tahoe. How it got there, I don’t know. But here it comes now, getting closer to the station, so lets tap our Compass cards on the ticket reader and hurry up to hop aboard!
We immediately head up to the front seat to watch the friendly MTS driver pilot this old streetcar down the track. Unlike modern trolleys or light rail, this vehicle really clatters and jerks along and makes you feel like your laboring forward! Whenever the door opens, a bell rings!
Walking down toward the rear of the refurbished car, we check out some old black-and-white photos. It’s cool to envision the streets of San Diego filled with streetcars over half a century ago!
The bells rings, the door opens, and another passenger steps aboard!
You can dangle your arm out a window if you like, I suppose. It’s fun to just sit and watch the buildings and people flash by. This is what I call riding in style!
The annual San Diego Bay Downtown Cleanup was held this morning! Local scuba divers cleaned up underwater garbage at the edge of our beautiful waterfront, while other volunteers assisted gathering trash above water. I walked along the Embarcadero from the San Diego Maritime Museum down to Tuna Harbor and took a bunch of cool photographs. Hopefully these pics provide a little inspiration! Let’s make the world more clean and beautiful!