Monday, 11 February 2008

Welcome to USA!!!

Warning, a long post with LOADS of bandwidth sucking picture!!
However, hopefully doesn't stop you to enjoy the post.

Finally, after a long 10 hour flight from Amsterdam, I survived (means I am still alive) and overcome the challenge of flying with a 14 months old. The flight was okay, the food however, were pretty good!!!
Anyway, here we are in San Diego, on our first day of the trip. And I found this from the hotel.

Yes, it was a Colgate tooth paste with mints bits on it. I heard there is bublegum flavoured toothpaste too!! Mm... I wonder where can I find them.
This is our car, with such a weird brand... called MERCURY?! But it is utterly spacious, and speedy. But awfully difficult to do parallel park with this.

On day two, early in the morning before heading to SEAWORLD, we decide to have a view of Balboa park. On the way we took the picture of the area.

Balboa Park is a 1,200 acre (4.9 km²) urban cultural park in San Diego, California, United States. Unlike some city parks which are mostly free of buildings in favor of open space and recreational fields (e.g. New York's Central Park), Balboa Park is a cultural complex. Besides open areas and natural vegetation, it contains a variety of cultural attractions including museums, theaters, gardens, shops and restaurants as well as the world-renowned San Diego Zoo. Balboa Park has been declared a National Historic Landmark. The park is managed and maintained by the City of San Diego Parks and Recreation Department.

Many of the park's attractions are along El Prado, a long, wide promenade running through the center of the park. Most of the buildings lining this street are in the Spanish Revival style, a richly ornamented eclectic mixture of Spanish and Latin American architecture. Along this boulevard are many of the park's museums, including the Museum of Man, the San Diego Museum of Art, the Museum of Photographic Arts, the San Diego Model Railroad Museum, the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center and Timken Museum of Art.

There are a number of gardens located in the park. These include Alcazar Garden, Botanical Building, Cactus Garden, Casa del Rey Moro Garden, Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden, Japanese Friendship Garden, Marston House Garden, Palm Canyon and Zoro Garden.

It's always a great idea to visit the park early in the morning, because NO ONE is there, and we practically can freely take picture without any distraction. By the way, to those of you who was wondering whether we need to pay to visit the park. The answer is NO, it's absolutely free providing you won't enter any of the Museum (which we didn't). Even the parking is free!!!

That day when we came, someone was playing the organ inside this building. Unfortunately we can't go inside to see more.

Unfortunately I don't know what this pretty building is called :-(

I love this sunflower a lot!

Here is some picture of me and Josiah.

The sun was so bright that almost impossible to get rid of the lens flare. But Josiah was definetely having a great time!

I found out that now, Josiah tend (or may be understand) every time we try to take a picture of him. He deliberately POSE for it!!! Well done you little guy!

Another picture of the building!

Josiah is trying to touch the pillar's carving. Unfortunately he is not quite "tall" yet even carried by Yusdi.

Lovely spanish architecure.

Other attractions include the Spreckels Organ Pavilion, which includes the world's largest outdoor pipe organ; The Old Globe Theatre, a replica of Shakespeare's Globe Theatre; a collection of "international cottages"; the Botanical Building with its accompanying reflecting pool; the Starlight Bowl; and the largest tenant of the park, the Balboa Park Golf Complex with an 18-hole golf course and a 9-hole executive golf course.

Balboa Park is adjacent to many of San Diego's neighborhoods including Downtown San Diego, Bankers Hill, Hillcrest, North Park, South Park, and Golden Hill.

Among the institutions within the park's borders not administered by the city's parks department are San Diego High School, Naval Medical Center San Diego (NMCSD), and the San Diego Zoo.

The above picture is edited to produce false depth of field. It's giving the sense that the picture was taken using camera with a very good prime lenses. The trick is pretty simple. Just use Gaussian blur.

Loads of cheery blossom on its way. You will see MORE as you scroll down.

And another PERFECT reflection! And with loads of cheery blossom blooms. In reality it looks much more white than this picture.

And trying the black and white version of it!

The weather has been fantastic, it's warm, not too hot and best of all NO WINDS has create this magnificent reflection of surrounding building on the lake.

We are quite fortunate that we came on the RIGHT season. People know that cherry blossom only bloomed for a little while, and its gone for another year. Yet, we managed to capture the park covered with flowers!!!

Yes, just another bunch of cheery blossom!

and loads of poppies....

A bit of history to it....
The city park was made manifest starting in 1835 when the newest breed of San Diego city officials from the Mexican government took office. One of the first things the city officials did was select a 47,000 acre (190 km²) tract of land to be used for recreational purposes, making the section of land within the this area that is now Balboa Park one of the oldest sites in the United States dedicated to public recreational usage.

No further activity took place until 1845, when a survey was done by Henry D. Fitch to map the 47,000 acres (190 km²). The Mexican government would never get to use this land for anything due to the Mexican-American War, and in 1848 the park became property of the United States of America. In 1850, it became part of California with the creation of the state.

On February 15, 1868, a request was put forth to the city's Board of Trustees to take two 160-acre (0.6 km²) plots of land, and create a public park. This request was made by one of the trustees, E. W. Morse, who along with real estate developer Alonzo Horton had selected a site just northeast of the growing urban center of "New Town" (now downtown San Diego) for the nascent park's location.

Subsequently, a resolution to set aside 1400 acres (6 km²) for a city park was approved by the city's Board of Trustees on May 26, 1868.

Then in 1870, a new law was passed, an "act to insure the permanency of the park reservation." The bill stated that "these lands (lots by number) are to be held in trust forever by the municipal authorities of said city for the purpose of a park" (Christman 14). It was around this time that San Diego residents were acquiring a certain fondness for the park; this is illustrated by their strong desire to keep the park intact when in 1871, there was a documented conspiracy to disassemble and "grab" the park land (Christman 15). This conspiracy, political in nature, attempted to create a bill and speed it through the state legislature before anybody could do anything to stop it. The thwarting of this attempt was due largely in part to a San Diego resident who had somehow learned of the plan then immediately informed higher powers in Sacramento. The conspiracy was leaked to the press thereby exposing the city officials involved. Immediately, other San Diegan officials got together and collected signatures supporting the current existence of the park. Their plea was successful.

Okay, I think it's time for me to pack up and get ready. Today we are heading to Disneyland!!! Tata...!!!


Roger said...

Glad you had a safe trip and having a good time. Your seeing stuff I've never seen and I was born there!

Roger said...

Glad you had a good flight. We were praying for you. We know how it can be flying with kids! Pray you have a lovely holiday.

betchai said...

oh did not know you were here in san diego last year, you took very good photographs of balboa park, i think the building is spreckels organ pavillon, i love going there too :)