Friday, January 16, 2015
Last Friday my family and I went to San Diego and went inside the USS Midway. It was America’s Longest-serving aircraft carrier of the 20th century. It was used from 1945 to 1991. About 200,000 sailors served on it. After it retired, it became a museum located in downtown San Diego at Navy Pier where you can go throughout most of the ship using an audio tour, or you can just look around.
We were staying about an hour out of San Diego at a friends house. My mom looked up on the internet what was the San Diego’s most popular place to visit, which was the USS Midway. After doing our homeschool in the morning, we drove down to the city. As soon as we entered downtown I commented on how clean the city was. Unlike any city I have ever been in, San Diego was very clean and I couldn’t see very many homeless people. We drove down to Navy Pier where there are many Hotels, Yachts, Ferries, Fish Grottos, and Boats. Because it was a city, people were everywhere.
We parked at a Fish Grotto called Anthony’s and right next to it was a huge 16 hundreds ship called the Star of Indi. It look repainted and nice but we wanted to go on the USS Midway. We ate at Anthony’s and we had a good view of the water.
When we were done we walked down Navy Pier and you could not miss the USS Midway. Its huge! It looks like a huge boat but it has a big platform on top that is as big as the boat where the airplanes (and hellecopters) would take off. It looks kind of like that big flying boat in the Avengers except it can’t fly (and it isn’t as fancy inside).We went up to a booth where we paid and then we got to enter. I was a bit nervous because one of my biggest fears is deep water and this huge boat looked like it was about to sink! But I was excited.
We went through the door where they checked our tickets and then we went down a hallway that led to the biggest room I have ever been in. It was full of planes and helicopters! It was full of people and it had gift shops. We got our head phones for the audio tour which were connected to a thing that looked like an old TV remote. A worker explained that you just push the numbers on the remote of the number on the sign in each room.
So we started off. We went through old tunnel looking hallways with oval doors. Arrows showed us where to go and we looked at where the sailors slept. They were small bunks with little lockers to put their stuff. We also saw the officers and commanders sleeping quarters. They all got their own room and had bigger beds with dressers and desks. We saw the showers and bathrooms. They didn’t have a big water supply so they had to take very short showers. We also saw what is kind of like the ships jail called the Brig. It was where the sailors went if they started fights or gambled. The audio tour thing said they would have to sit in a cell for days only eating water and bread. On the walls of every room there were things that the sailors said about their stay on the ship. Life there didn’t sound so comfy.
Then we were led back to that big room full of planes in the center of the ship. I was curious at how they would these huge ships onto the take off deck. The audio tour said their was a huge piece of floor that if you folded the planes wings the floor would lift up and be kind of like an elevator and take the plane up to the deck. Next we went down stairs and saw the kitchen. They had many choices for food and the kitchens were really big with huge pots for soup. Then we saw the mail room and the laundry room.
We started seeing old men in yellow hats walking around. Turns out these were old WW2 veterans who worked on the USS Midway and they would talk to us about their experience. We went to rooms where we saw places where they operated and took care of the ship.
Finally we went up to the top deck. We saw all kinds of air force planes. We walked up and down the deck, looking at the planes. My mom told me that at the end of the war, when we won all of the sailors came into Navy Pier and kissed any girl they could find. They have a statue of that on the pier.
We saw a couple more rooms and then went back to our car. We drove around San Diego and looked at the older part of the city and the newer part. After we had dinner with our friend then went back to her house.
I think my family can agree that it was super fun. Sadly my moms phone was dead while we were in the boat so we have no pictures of our own, but we do have some of the city.