Friday, December 19, 2014

cycling down the Ngauranga Gorge, Wellington, 1900s


On today's alignment with 6 lanes, over 60,000 cars and trucks a day traverse the gorge.  A picture considered for, but not used in the book Wellington Transport Memories.

from Paris to Zermatt, Switzerland, in 20 hours

Today you can do it by train in a bit over 7 hours. The final stage still involves a cog wheel section, but these days electric rather than steam powered. See earlier post. Those small blue flowers grow wild all over Switzerland, are they called liverleaf?

1952 Morris Commercial truck

We don't think those turn indicator lights were there originally.

bad turbulence hits a Boeing 777-200 en route from Seoul in Korea to Dallas-Fort Worth and causes cabin damage



Those who fly certain routes, particularly over alps and into certain airports such as Wellington, know to expect turbulence which will cause an adrenaline rush, but little else. However, this documents an incident on Tuesday when it hit violently and caused cabin damage; five people were injured, fortunately none seriously. The pilots decided to land in Tokyo.

It's quite unlikely that turbulence will cause structural damage to modern airliners, but loose things inside the aircraft - including the passengers - are another matter.

Aircraft have weather radar which detects turbulence associated with storm fronts and pilots will do their best to avoid the rough stuff. However, the phenomenon of clear air turbulence is something which they can't detect.  Usually it won't last too last, though.

The obvious message is, when seated, keep your seat belt fastened at all times.

More details here

tram in Taupo Quay, Wanganui, circa 1910


It is turning in the distance into Victoria Avenue.  For more, see earlier posts and our books.

1993 EOS Van Hool tour bus

Van Hool is a Belgian coach builder, founded in 1947.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Uruguay vehicle stamps from 1998

1930 Lancia Autobomba (fire truck, nothing to do with Muslims); 1946 Maserati San Remo; 1954 Alfa Romeo trolleybus; 1936 Fiat 500 Topolino.

'Planes, Trains and Automobiles' exhibition in Boston's Museum of Fine Arts


This opened a month ago and continues to 10 May next.  Details on the Museum's website

the beginning of the end of communism in Cuba - and ironically Cuba's many classic American cars


The announcement of the easing of trade restrictions and the normalization of diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba is actually just another step on the way to the end of Cuba's 5 decade old disastrous experiment with communism, as Cuba has reluctantly realised that the communist command economy model just doesn't work and has increasingly allowed small scale private enterprise.  With this though, the days of Cuba’s classic American cars may be coming to an end. Since the imposition of the U.S. trade embargo in 1961, massive fleets of pre-revolution American cars have remained on the road through the ingenuity of the country’s auto mechanics.

If Americans are allowed to import from Cuba again, many of these cars will probably go back to the U.S.

More Cuba car pics here