My Western Trip~Part 8

25 Jun

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites



The next day I headed out to the Rialto Municipal Airport to visit the Warbirds West Museum, but when I got there, I discovered they were out of business. So, I turned around and drove over to Chino, CA for a tour of the Planes of Fame and Yanks Air Museums. I had visited both of these fabulous museums two years ago, and was looking forward to touring them again to see what kind of new aircraft they had added to their collections. As it turned out they both didn’t open until late in the morning the day I was there, and I had several museums in the West Los Angeles area I wanted to visit. bikesSo, I headed west for Inglewood, CA (where I went to college) but ran into heavy traffic before I could get close to my first destination. It was Sunday, and a bicycle marathon (with tens of thousands of bicycles) was being held that day and was traveling down Wilshire Blvd. causing traffic to be backed up for miles on either side of Wilshire. After creeping along for almost an hour, before I found a place where I could get out of that mess, I was tired, frustrated, and decided to call it a “Wasted Day”- giving up on seeing any museums that day and headed back toward the motel.

 The next morning (Monday) I started out for West Los Angeles again, only to run into more heavy morning rush-hour (stop & go) traffic on the freeways. I said, “The heck with this,” and headed south toward Santa Ana. My next stop was at the John Wayne fuddyAirport to visit the Lyon Air Museum. This was a great experience, as all the museum’s aircraft are in flying condition and all their rare vehicles run. I got a special treat when they towed their B-17G, “Fuddy Duddy” out of the hanger and fired up all four engines. There’s nothing I enjoy more than the smell of a large aviation engine starting up. It’s something about the oil and gas mixture that does it for me. And, here I got to experience the smell of “Four” engines starting! What a thrill.

 Next, I tried to find out about the Aeros Lighter Than Air Project I had heard was going on at the Tustin AFB. Worldwide Aeros is planning to build airships that would be about 500 feet long, with a zeppelin-like rigid structure, ultimately designed to carry loads as heavy as 250 tons, at speeds of more than 100 miles an hour. The object is to use a LTA vehicle to move heavy weights over difficult terrain, without spending a lot of money developing a supporting infrastructure. The idea sounds good, but I keep remembering what happened to the USS Macon and USS Akron back in the 1930s. Come to find out, the only scaled-down prototype vehicle, the Aeroscraft Large Cargo Vehicle (Dragon Dream), was damaged just the month before, when part of the 1942 hanger roof collapsed and fell on it. There was no word as to when or if the project would continue.



While I was in Tustin, I visited The Marconi Automotive Museum.   This impressive collection features automobiles from around the world, including some very rare Ferrari and Maserati race cars.

Heading south again, I stopped for lunch at Ruby’s Aqua Diner, situated on beautiful North Lake in Irvine, CA. I had one of the best BLT sandwiches I’d ever eaten, and the 50’s music was great. Then it was on south to Vista, CA where I had a nice visit with DiVoran’s brother, David, and his wife Susan. That evening we continued our visiting and enjoyed some mouth-watering Mexican food at Cocina del Charro Mexican Restaurant in San Marcos, CA.




                                                            —–To Be Continued—–








3 Responses to “My Western Trip~Part 8”

  1. skd June 26, 2014 at 6:54 am #

    You write so well. I almost feel I am experiencing your travel. Do keep visiting my blog. It misses your presence badly 😦


  2. divoran09 June 25, 2014 at 10:08 am #

    Cute Waitress, Bill.


  3. Louise Gib son June 25, 2014 at 8:06 am #

    Wonderful experiences…great descriptive writing.


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