Sunday, November 12, 2017

Dia de los Muertos | Day of the Dead | San Carlos | Mexico

Welcome to San Carlos!!  The first week I was here, it was the celebration of the Day of the Dead.  In our area, they don't celebrate it as much as some other areas of the country.

Shrines were erected in different areas of the town.  They would have photos of loved ones who had passed on, as well as candles, flowers and other items.  In some towns, families and friends would gather in cemeteries to spend the evening or night eating special food that had been prepared.  There would be conversations remembering and honoring their loved ones, and even sometimes music.  This is not a sad remembrance, and as usual with Mexico, it's full of color.

This is a closeup of the photo previous to this - and shows the detail of the "altar".
And, of course, the art gallery had to have a painting of one of a typical mask, similar to those that some people may use in their celebrations.
I went into an office in town, and they had their shrine set up inside, a tribute to the singer Selena.

It is not a tradition that is observed much here, and I don't even think they did these shrines the first two winter seasons I was here in San Carlos.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Fort Moultrie and Fort Sumter | Charleston | South Carolina

This is the parade ground in the middle of Fort Moultrie, and the photo below is the entrance to the fort, which is a National Monument on Sullivan's Island.
There were multiple cannons on display, aimed at all areas.  This fort was in use during the Revolutionary War in 1776, then the Civil War, World War I and World War II.  Some of the World War II influence can be seen around the fort.
This building is a more recent addition to the fort, since it was in use in World War II.  Outside the building, there was a machine to send lighted signals to troops on the water.  Both the building above and this signal machine are from World War II. 
I thought the next photos were interesting, showing how ammunition arrived at the fort.  The crates in the top photo are marked 1907.  The barrels in the second photo are marked 1834.

This shows a direct hit during the Civil War, and is why fort walls are always very thick.

Another fort in the area is Fort Sumter. 

Fort Sumter is quite far out in the Charleston Harbor, there was a large crowd visiting the fort that morning, so we were all brought out on the tour boat you see above.  No dolphins to be seen, but it sure was good to get on a boat again.
This is the entrance to the fort itself, which was 3 stories tall when it was built, although only one story has been restored.  Building on this fort started in 1829 and was not yet complete when South Carolina seceded from the Union.  Their first battle was in 1861, another was started in 1863 when the Union tried to overtake the fort.  By 1865, the fort was reduced to piles of rubble, although still in Confederate hands. 

If you look to the right of this next photo, you'll see a hole where the fort was struck by a round from the opposing army. 


 Looking out from the fort, they would have had a good view in all directions, especially with 3 stories. 


Sunday, November 5, 2017

USS Clamagore | Charleston | South Carolina

This submarine was built for World War II, but didn't get finished in time for action.  It spent time in Key West, Charleston and New London. 
This is the galley, also known as a kitchen.

Dining room - I'm assuming they ate in shifts.

Captain's bunk.

Radio room full of equipment that would be much smaller with today's technology.

Four engines powered the sub, 2 on each side of this area.

Small hatches made you step high and bend over to get through.

Berths for the torpedoes.

This is not the place for a claustrophobic person!

The sub was tied to the dock, unlike the aircraft carrier, which has been stuck on the bottom for some time. 


Tuesday, October 31, 2017

USS Yorktown | Charleston | South Carolina

SS Yorktown was used in World War II in the Pacific. 

The stern of the ship, where the planes would start to land.

The bow is also squared off at the top for more room.
Following is a panorama shot, which is about the equivalent of 3 regular photos.  In order to get some kind of perspective, here are the statistics on the original construction:
820 feet at the waterline, and 872 feet overall
The beam is 93 feet, which is from one side to the other
Draft (depth of the keel) is 28 feet, which is unloaded
Top speed was 33 knots
The ship and crew earned 11 battle stars in the war

This next photo shows the contrast of a small sailboat against the SS Yorktown.  Of course, the ship is actually quite far from that little boat.

The ship is so massive that it took about 3 hours to tour the boat, up and down what seemed like dozens of these stairs.
The flight deck had multiple aircraft of the type that might have been used in the war.



Inside, there were exhibits - more aircraft.

Replicas of the Apollo capsules, the originals of which were recovered by the USS Yorktown in 1968.

The bridge, where the ship would be piloted. 

These hatches divided the ship between areas.


I bet this was the brig. 
These bunks could not have been comfortable!
Office work must be done, even at sea!

And the crew still had to have haircuts.

There was a little shop for extra treats.  Check out some of those prices.

Laundry had to be done at sea. 

And, of course, weapons for the war.

The galley, where all the cooking was done.  This shows just a small portion of the area.


You need doctors at sea.