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Sunday, February 28, 2021

Costa Rica - Day 2 - Do You Know The Way to San Jose?

Harry at the Pre-Columbus Gold Museum. We saw 8 people in there. 

Costa Rica is a farming country. Lots of lovely cheap fruit. We are in the tropics. 


Lulu and I decided to do a "Ted Cruz" and get out of the country. I did it because I wanted to be a good Dad. We flew to Costa Rica - landing at 4000 feet in the mountains of this Central American Democracy. We are spending 2 nights in the capital city of San Jose. Although the country has 5 million people - half of them live in the Central Valley around this city - and the rest are scarcely spread out over this farming nation. 

At 10 degrees North latitude - we are deeply in the tropics. Every day is rough 12 hours of day and 12 hours of night. The temperatures are the same all year. We are in the dry season right now - we had 75 degrees and sunny today and a nice breeze. It is surprising they do not need AC here so much because we are up high in the mountains. Down at the coasts on the Atlantic and Pacific - it is warmer being at sea level. There are mountains here as high at 12,000 feet. 

We walked the streets today - eating - shopping - and visiting the National Theatre and the Pre-Columbus Gold Museum. We walked a lot and I get tired much more quickly here in the high altitude. Also - I have already experienced "Montezuma's Revenge" a little :-). With the sun and breeze you can get sun burn quickly. We are also adjusting to Central Time. 

Here are a few of the pictures we took. I have described them as I go. 

The Grand Hotel of Costa Rica is on the main square. It is a Hilton - but just has a little Hilton sign on the counter. We will be here two nights. Monday we drive to our volcano hotel. 

There are tons of restaurants including the chains. McDonald's has a chocolate cone that is nice. 600 Colones equal one USA dollar. Every restaurant and store takes credit card - and that is the best conversion rate. 

They like John Lennon - here is a statue of him. He lived from 1940 to 1980 - 40 years. He has been dead 40 years. He led The Beatles - and also was a counter culture hero. 

We liked this church as we walked by. There was a service going on. 

Lulu peeked in.

The National Theatre had an 11AM tour. There were about 10 people on that tour - all masked - many from the USA. We met two ladies from Florida - here for implants - DENTAL implants. 

Our Grand Hotel - the lobby is in the glass area at the top. We walked all over town from here. 

This was the restaurant in the National Theatre. You could have a drink and snack before the shows.

The wooden floor of the theatre went up and down about three feet. It was made of cedar lumber from the mountains. 

In the theatre was this intermission lobby. 

We were right next to the president's box. 

This is a statue of Anne Frank. What a sad story of her hiding and being captured  by the Nazis and dying in the Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp. It reminded me of Trump taking immigrant kids form their parents at the border. 

Art work in front of the museum.

Columbus arrived in 1502 in Costa Rica. The Spanish had guns and pillaged Latin America. They took so much gold back to Spain. This museum had a giant collection of gold art - Pre-Columbus. It was $14 - and we saw just a handful of people inside. There were more hosts than guests. 

Following are many samples of pure gold art - made before 1500. 

The museum also had a gold coin display. The currency is the Colone. It takes 611 Colones to make one USA dollar. There must have been inflation because look at this 20 Colone Gold Piece. It was the size of a quarter. Today - it would be worth less than a penny. 

When entering stores - this machine takes your temperature. If you have a fever - an alarm goes off. 

These beautiful pineapples are cheap 2 for 1000 Colones is less than a dollar each pineapple. 

Papayas are popular here. I had them for breakfast and could not taste them. My pineapple and watermelon made up for it. 

Giant radishes were cheap - 3 big bunches for like 80 cents. 

They're Great!

Choco the Elephant. 

Don Pepe - this is the guy that eliminated the military in 1949. They have been at peace for 72 years. That is the National Museum in the background. 

What is this? I have no idea. It was at the National Museum. 

Lulu shook this door and the alarm went off. We ran. 

Lulu loves shopping - these SYR shops are all over. Mostly clothes - mostly size 2.  

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Charlotte - Changing Planes For Overseas - day 1

We left our Tallahassee home at 6 am. We flew to Charlotte on American Airlines. We just boarded our plane to Costa Rica. It is an A320. It holds about 150 people but there are plenty of empty seats. Ready for liftoff. We have our own row. The row behind us is empty. One person in front of us.

We had to but travel insurance in case we have trip extended.

We have both our virus shots. Masks on. Social distance. Hands washed. No hectoring please. We believe in science and are cautious.

4 hour we will be there.

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Cousins Cathy and Joe Came To Visit

We had a nice Weekend in Tallahassee. Weather was clear and in the 60s. We went to see the FSU Girls play Louisville - the number 2 team in the country. The Seminoles won. 

The cousins traveled four hours up from their winter townhouse near Disneyworld. They normally live in Allentown PA. 

Saturday, February 13, 2021

Ford F-150 Hybrid Truck with 7000 Watt Generator

I am so impressed with this hybrid engine setup. It is in a 2021 Ford F-150. It has a turbo hybrid engine producing 400HP. That is enough to covet it. But it uses it big battery to power a 7000 watt inverter. That is enough to power your camper - or even your home when the electricity goes down. If you had the engine in your camper - your could have your air conditioner running all night - without a loud noisy generator. No more disturbing others with your generator. As the battery draws down - the truck engine comes on to quietly charge the battery. You also have 7000 watts of power as you go down the highway. That is a lots of power to run the refrigerator - microwave - vacuum cleaner - AC - lights - hair dryer - TV - water heater. 

See the demo of the truck here -

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Eglin Air Force Base Museum - My Birthday Visit

B-25 Mitchell Bomber
At Eglin Air Base - Jimmy Doolittle
practiced with his B-25s
for the April 1942 attack on Tokyo.
Eglin Air Force Base Museum - Florida

On my birthday trip to the Emerald Coast - Lulu was enjoying visiting the outlets at Destin. I drove 15 miles to one of my favorite museums. The main building of the museum was closed this time due to covid - but there are about 30 static aircraft displays outside in the sandy soil - among the Florida pines. They are well maintained and labeled. They are spread out to allow for plenty of photographs from all sides. 

I spent an hour or two - enjoying the sunny and 60s weather - with my camera and imagination. My Dad loved airplanes and passed that love onto me. We had models of many of these airplanes - some of them flyable. In the 1950s and 1960s - we would go to airshows - worshipping these planes. 

My Dad built one specific model I will never forget. It was a B-25 with a six foot wingspan and two gasoline engines. His hero was General Jimmy Doolittle - who led a group of B-25 bombers to attack Japan right after Pearl Harbor. 

SR-71 Blackbird. This spy plane could fly higher - faster -
and could climb faster than any airplane. It could cross the USA
in 2 hours. 
B-52 - this was used to drop
thousands of tons of bombs on Vietnam.
B-17 - this bomber was used to bring Hitler 
and the Nazis to their knees in World War II.
This is the A-10 Warthog - it supported the ground troops in 
Vietnam - Iraq - Afghanistan - Kuwait. 
The Purple Heart is awarded by Congress to anyone
that is wounded in defending their country in battle.
Mother Of All Bombs - this is the most destructive of all
bombs - not nuclear. It is dropped from a plane - 
guided by satellite. 20 tons.
This is a captured Russian Mig-13.
This is a Sidewinder Missile. It was the first heat seeking missile. 
It would follow the exhaust of an enemy plane -
and fly into the engine. 
F-86 - it was used in the Korean War. It won many
of the first air to air fights with Migs.
Big Ugly Disk - before there were little satellite TV dishes - 
I had one in the backyard Tamaqua. We had free TV
from all over the world. 
UH-1 Huey Helicopter - 9000 were made for Vietnam. 
They would ferry troops in and out of battle.
Many are still in use today.
F-15 - a supersonic fighter. It is 50 years old. 
This B-25 could go 270 mph in 1942.
We used them to attack Tokyo -
taking off from an aircraft carrier.