Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Day 13 – California Science Center & Hollywood

Driving through downtown L.A. to get to the California Science Center was less than fun.  But, I did it and we made it there safely.  All I can say is that I’m thankful for the invention of GPS!
The Science Center was great for a free thing to do.  It is much smaller than other science museums that we’ve toured through.

I’m always surprised at how much the kids take in during museum tours.  During a visit, they are often quiet or don’t show much interest.  But when they share their experience with others, they remember way more than I do, and with greater detail!
While telling Jason about astronauts, Katie remembered that after returning from space, an astronaut’s heart rate will increase and they often faint.  This is due to the change of gravity and how the heart (blood pressure) reacts to it.
Emily was fascinated with the planes and how speed and air pressure forces and controls flight.

Inside the wind tunnel...

They climbed into a real helicopter…

It was a short drive to Hollywood Blvd. from the Science Center, so we decided to go there next.  But before parking, we took a detour.  Even though I had already gotten a good picture of the Hollywood sign last week, today’s clear blue sky drew me back to it!  It was well worth the trek up the mountain.   The research I had done earlier in the week paid off because we were able to get closer than before.   The roads up the mountain became more narrow and curvy as we elevated.   When we came to the end of the road (literally – we were as far up as we could go), we parked, got out, and stood in awe of how close we actually were!  The kids were proud of me for driving up there!

After what would be our last trip to the sign, I drove to and parked just off of Hollywood Blvd. so that we could take what we thought would be one last stroll down the “walk of fame.”  We were on the hunt for some souvenirs.  We walked into the Hollywood Wax Museum’s gift shop and noticed some all too familiar figures standing on one side…
Seeing this made us all want to go in to see more.  But there was no time that day.  I knew that driving back to the hotel would be a nightmare, so we had to get moving.
There’s no way I would live or work in L.A.  It took us over 2-1/2 hours to drive back to the hotel!  The traffic was just insane.  Thankfully, I had taken snacks, water, and ice in a small cooler because we were really hungry.  We didn’t make it back to the hotel until 8:00 and then we went out for pizza.  We just brought it back to the hotel to eat.
It was an ok day.  Not my favorite, but not too bad either.
I’ll end this entry with a little historical fact.  When placed on the side of hill, the Hollywood sign originally read “Hollywoodland” which was the name of the real estate development on top the hill.  The company was trying to entice buyers and advertised the area by placing the 50-foot tall letters on the side of the hill.  Some years later, “land” was removed from the sign and it became the well-known icon that it is today.

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