Sunday, October 26, 2014

Never Give In

What a week! Working at the museum is tough, but very rewarding. While looking for some exhibit materials, I stumbled upon a very interesting typewriter

I've never seen a Model 1 like this. It appears to be a machine used by the military in World War II. Specifically, it was used by a unit of the Missouri Guard. The controls are identical to my own Model 1, but the body and keys are made of different materials. Maybe a machine made during the war?

Not sure if this was used by the military, but it's a typer, so here it is!

I felt puny Friday night. After a good night's sleep, I decided to treat myself to the National Winston Churchill Museum in Fulton, just up the road.

Fulton, MO had a brief moment in the spotlight in 1946 when Sir Winston Churchill came with President Harry Truman to give a speech. It was the most famous one of his entire career.

This building was actually a church built in the 16th Century and then bombed during WWII.
It was sent here to America brick by brick for preservation and repair.

A carbon copy of the infamous words.


Sword of the Lord Mayor of London, made in the 17th Century.

Inside the church.

These letters between Churchill and his love, Clementine, were scattered throughout the museum.
It was very well done, giving you the chance to see how they felt and talked about issues.

Entering the trenches of WWI.

One thing I didn't know about was Churchill's artistic talent!
This is one of many paintings he did throughout his life, along with lots of writings.


A multi-screen timeline about the rise of Hitler.

A audio exhibit about the faux "peace in our time."
To activate it, you pull up on the red panel, like a guillotine...

This was an amazing exhibit! You enter and the radio starts playing reports from The Blitz.

Add caption

I started doing this as the BBC started talking about German bombers and the explosions chimed in the background.

The lectern and chair used by the man himself.

Cold War exhibit.

This was awesome! An entire room dedicated to Churchill's wit.
You sit down and a recording plays. Club patrons tell funny stories.
A different seat will get you a different story.
There are also monitors that you can use to read additional material.

A fragment of the Berlin Wall displayed outside.
Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, and Michail Gorbachev spoke in front of it.
I'm very glad I went. It was good for the soul. One can't study the life of a great man without wondering how you stack up, how you're own life is going to pan out, and what's your place in the world. I'm sure Winston didn't know, but did he ever want to know?

All and all, it was a great weekend!

Power to the pen, and never give in!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

It's a Plane!

I'm back in Jefferson City, working with the Missouri Military Museum at the Skelton Training Center (a National Guard base) for more school credit.

On Friday, my boss was kind enough to let me take my pick of some books which were donated. Among other things, I found the autobiography of Omar Bradley, one of America's premier generals in World War Two.

Yesterday, the weather was absolutely beautiful. I went to a local park and got into the book. But I wasn't able to concentrate. Something kept passing overhead...a B-24 Liberator!

If you read my post on the Wings of Freedom exhibit, you'll know that I love old airplanes. So, imagine my surprise when I see more of them in the sky just a few months later! The park I was at isn't too far from the local airport, so I got to see the bomber make several passes.

But there's more.

What I believe is a T-6 Texan, but I had to consult a friend who spent time in the USAF.

I saw this guy at a distance, doing some loops. At first, I thought it was a P-51 Mustang, since that plane was featured in the WOF lineup. After it made a few passes, I decided otherwise. It wasn't moving fast enough.

I only made it through a few pages of the book. The planes captured most of my attention. When I got back to the hotel room, I tried to find out if there was an event going on nearby. No luck.

Courtney called. As we talked, I saw something else out of my window...

AH! A Zeppelin! The Germans are here!

This was pretty cool. I'm only used to seeing blimps at sports arenas, not flying around like other private or commercial aircraft.

Later, I watched a documentary on Manuel Noriega. There was a typewriter, which I captured with a screenshot.

It's a Silver Seiko portable, but not the Royal Signet. A close inspection shows that it has a line space selector and ribbon color selector. Maybe it's a Mercury or a Jet.

That's all for now. Been working really hard. Meantime, go out and live life. I promise to have some good content on here when it becomes practicable after first seeing to some priorities that are of tantamount importance to my current and future circumstances...

Anyhow...power to the pen.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

The Great Smokies!

Now that I've finished a lot of my school work, I can finally talk about my epic vacation last week!

When I was told we were going to the Smokies, part of me didn't want to. I had a lot to do! Test to study for, papers to write, jobs to hunt.

But once I got there, I realized how badly I needed it.

Unfortunately, my phone's battery started showing its age, and did not hold a charge very well. Hence, my photo-taking was rather sporadic. Hope you enjoy!

Some dessert, because I'm a tease.

Posters at my local tackle shop.

Eastern KY.

Finally there!

A friend of the family was generous enough to let us stay in her cabin.
The town is called Maggie Valley, and what a quaint little place it is!
You can see the ski lift on the mountain to the right.

Dessert on the first night. Ice cream pie!

This lovely rose was growing right outside the front door.

There are several ways to get around in the Smokies, but this is the most famous.

A chair used by President Franklin D. Roosevelt at the commencement of the park. 

Would've been helpful if the lines were, I dunno, labeled?

This is one of many hidden paths Jordan and I found.
There's always something else to explore!

Half way up the Allen Cave Trail.

The so-called "cave."

Wasn't me!

Joey's was awesome.

The Village, a neat little shopping district in Gattlinburg.

You don't see these very often!

While hanging out in Gatlinburg, we decided to take a trip through the Ripley's Aquarium!

Garden eels.

Sand tiger shark.

Sawfish swimming over me in the shark exhibit.
These are critically endangered, almost never seen in the wild.

Cuttlefish have been a  favorite of mine for years!


The Cherokee Reservation is located just outside of Maggie Valley.
As you can see, most of the signs are bilingual.
The Cherokee Nation is one of the few Native tribes that has a written language.

Jordan and I hiked all along this river until the bank got too steep.
It's reported that you can catch a lot of trout here!

This interesting root system was near the waterfall.
Bad place to get your ankle caught.

Top of the waterfall, courtesy of another hidden path.


Good eye, Jordan! These slugs were nestled comfortably in the crack of a tree branch.

Regrettably, I don't have any of the good stuff. On our last day of the trip, we braved a dangerous road to Cataloochee Valley and saw lots of elk! I stood within twenty yards of three magnificent bulls, and Jordan caught an bugle conversation on tape!

Once I get those files, I'll upload them here. Until then, you'll have to settle for my boring photos.

It's like waking up from a dream.
Goodbye, North Carolina.

Wait, where are we???

Power to the pen!