Introduction

In this series of posts, I will describe things and places in the USA that are worth to visit. The list will be based on my two trips to the USA, which I made in 2012 and 2013. Hence this will a list of places that I have seen and enjoyed. There will be probably five or more posts

In this part, you will read about aliens, dinosaurs, and space exploration.

You can find other parts here:
Part II
Part III

Visiting The Natural History Museum in Los Angeles

The Jurassic Park premiered when I was eight (1993). This movie was incredible at the time of its premiere. From my perspective, it is one of the best achievements of cinematography. I watched this movie on a pirated copy that my father brought from my neighbors. The image quality was horrible, the movie was dubbed in polish by some amateurs. But these were different times, hence nobody carried about details.

This movie caused an unbelievable phenomenon. At this time I and nearly all of my friends wanted to become a paleontologist. We wanted to be like Dr. Alan Grant when we grow up. I still remember that day after day we were looking for fossils, and we had actually found a few. I still remember checking my grandmother’s amber necklaces for the presence of mosquitos. Unfortunately, I had failed to find any. The Jurassic Park for sure has had a huge influence on many of my life choices.

If you also were hooked into paleontology in the past, or if you loved Jurassic Park, then you should visit the Natural History Museum in Los Angeles. You will find beautifully reconstructed fossils of dinosaurs, mammals, and much more…

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Relaxing on the Kailua Beach, Oahu

This is the best beach I have ever seen. I could spend many hours there without becoming bored. With all these beautiful colors, It simply seemed like a paradise. It looked like it was taken out of a movie or a postcard. The colors were so vivid, that I would never believe that these pictures were not enhanced in any way without seeing this place with my own eyes.

During my visit (first half of September), the beach was nearly empty. If you like water sports, you can try windsurfing or kitesurfing there.

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Watching the Sunset from Griffith Observatory

If you are visiting Los Angeles, you should head to the Griffith Observatory during the sunset hours. In good weather you will see a landscape in vivid colors. You will have a view of LA downtown, and well known Hollywood sign.

The observatory is located on the south-facing slope of Mount Hollywood and was opened in 1935. From the terrain of the observatory I experienced these views:

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Making a stop in Roswell

Roswell, New Mexico is famous for a UFO incident that took place in 1947.  At the beginning, the official version stated that the weather balloon had crashed. Later in the 1990s, the US military has released two reports disclosing the true nature of the crashed aircraft: a surveillance balloon from Project Mogul.

The accident from 1947 has created many conspiracy theories, that evolved for many years. It has been covered in various in documentaries, especially on the Discovery Channel in the 1990s. The incident was also a background for movies and tv shows. It was one of the main topics in the X-Files.

In the town, I saw many commercial uses of the alien’s story. There is a UFO museum, there are alien figures. You can also loan money from the aliens, and they even “se habla Espanol”.

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Visiting The National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC

The Smithsonian’s museum dedicated to Air and Space, is an awesome place to visits, especially for engineers and technology geeks. In the Space Hall, I saw a full-scale mockup of the Hubble Space Telescope. It was built by Lockheed Missile and Space Company in 1975 for conducting various feasibility studies.

I also saw the Apollo 11 Command Module, “Columbia”, which was one of three parts of the complete Apollo spacecraft. The module was a living quarter for the three-person crew during most of the first manned lunar landing mission in July 1969. Getting so close to such a huge piece of history was, a childhood dream come true experience.

There also is a The Apollo Lunar Module (LM 2), which was built for a second unmanned Earth-orbit test flight. Because the test flight of LM 1, named Apollo 5, was so successful, a second mission was deemed unnecessary. The module was used only for ground testing.

These are only a few examples of many incredible objects. If you visit the museum you will see much more, i.e. the airplane of the Wright Brothers – The Wright Flyer.

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You can find the second part here.

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Slawomir

I was born in Warsaw, Poland. I lived there for over 30 years. Since December 2018 my life stretches between my home country and the UK. I hold a Ph.D. in Photonics Engineering. I'm interested in STEM, startups and the proper version of FOOTball
If you spot any grammar errors in the text, please let me know, I will be happy to make corrections.
Slawomir
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Slawomir

I was born in Warsaw, Poland. I lived there for over 30 years. Since December 2018 my life stretches between my home country and the UK. I hold a Ph.D. in Photonics Engineering. I'm interested in STEM, startups and the proper version of FOOTball If you spot any grammar errors in the text, please let me know, I will be happy to make corrections.

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