Thursday, 3 October 2013

Day 21 Los Angeles, Warner Bros Studios

At Warner Bros Studios
On the tour

'Wistaria Lane'

Having mastered drinking with no hands, James confidently takes the lead

Inside a movie 'house' - it's actually a storage shed

Inside a grand home

It was nicer from outside

Movie set

The open door revealed that there was no inside as such - just the garden behind the facade.
A set being readied for filming

Another elaborate set

Lighting equipment

It takes a lot of equipment to shoot a movie!

One of the many 'movie' streets

This patch of grass is used often - it has been Central Park, the park where the Big Bang crew fly their kites etc

The Friends set

Mo and Alex
A small sample of props and set dressings

Maxwell Smart's Sunbeam
Batmobile - Batman and Robin 1997
'72 Ford Gran Torino - from Gran Torino (2008)
Big Bang Space Capsule

The End!

Thanks to all involved for a very memorable and enjoyable adventure.

Day 20 Los Angeles, Universal Studios

At Universal Studios

'Movie' cars

A low emission model

Jurassic Park Hummer

Jurassic Park carnage

The weather was unpredictable

Model boat and set from King Kong

We survived the earthquake in the subway

Norman Bates (Hitchcock's Psycho) was keen to show us his new carving knife

The crashed 747 from War of the Worlds

Optimus Prime gets to meet James

View from Universal Studios

Having a short rest at Universal

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Day 19 Los Angeles, JPL, Page Museum and iFly

Day 19 - Itinerary for Tuesday October 1st
7:00am: Breakfast
8:00am: Catch bus to NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory
12:30pm: Farmers Market
2:00pm: Go to La Brea Tar Pits/ Page museum
5:30pm: City Walk and indoor skydiving with iFly

Today was a rather long day with the group rising at the bright and early hours of 6am-ish and having a lovely breakfast of congealed scrambled eggs and DECENT fruit! We caught the bus at the front of Sportsmen's Lodge and journeyed to JPL (Jet Propulsion lab.) We met the fastest speaking tour guide EVER and he explained how the JPL came to be and its history, then we watched an informative video about the wondrous planets of the universe, ending with, “We are all star dust, all of your being, all of your dreams, is star dust.” Hmmm, it was touching... We were taken on a tour and saw many smart people wandering about their habitat and also the clean room where they were building the SMAP. As we walked outside, many deer just walked about on the footpaths, it was very strange.
Afterwards we made our way to the Farmers Market. The shop people were very friendly, there was a lovely casual atmosphere and FOOD! The food was amazing and the majority of it seemed very fresh! The La Brea Tar Pits was a place with tar seeping up from the ground. We got to learn about the interesting facts of the tar pits and how they kept various animal bones and other particulates that have been trapped.
We then went to Universal Studios were some people shopped others did i-Fly. We had a packed day but full of fun and can’t wait for tomorrows sleep-ish in.  

Jasmine, Jodie, Isabel, and Felicity

NASA/CalTech Jet Propulsion Laboratory

A copy of the golden record attached to both Voyager spacecraft which were launched in 1977.  

1/2 size scale model of the Voyager Space craft.
Scale model of the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter 
Looking at the exhibits

James, Sam, Austen and Matt
Pat, Sasha and Felicity
Ryley checks out the thermal imaging device

The Vehicle Assembly Room at JPL - space probes are assembled here
Looking down into the Vehicle Assembly Room
Mission badges for some of JPL's spacecraft
A technician at work at JPL
JPL's Mission Control Centre
Learning about the role of Mission Control
A glimpse of some data shown in the Mission Control Centre

Data relating to 'Mars' spacecraft 

Data streams being received from various space probes
A model of Curiosity - the Mars rover
Closeup of one of Curiosity's six wheels - there is an interesting story behind the shape of the cutouts (think morse)
On the way back to LA from JPL in Pasadena

Page Museum - La Brae (tar pits)   

Pit 91 - excavation and recovery of ice age fossils has been ongoing for 98 years
Tar seeping out of the ground in central LA!
Bubbles of methane gas within the tar
Lachlan and extinct ground sloth - a very slow ride
James and the extinct short faced bear
CCB students and Columbian Mammoth
Girton students and mammoth
An extinct 'Antique Bison'
Extinct giant sloth
What big teeth you have - Sabre-Toothed Cat 
The extinct American Lion
Sabre-toothed cat and American Lion. Happily for campers, both are extinct!
Outside the museum, Charlie the banjo player.
Charlie taught us to square dance 

The entrance to the Page Museum at La Brae
Statues in the grounds of the museum depicting the entrapment of a mammoth

 At iFly, Hollywood 

Mo flying at iFly