Posted by: Joe | August 26, 2008

“It’s a beautiful day to get our war on.”

Watched the first episode of Generation Kill this evening, HBO’s new Band of Brothers-meets-Jarheads miniseries.  What I saw so far I liked.  Though I was slightly thrown off by a couple scenes–generally a guy driving a Humvee in a closeup shot babbling about pussy and chowing down on Skittles is about to take a large caliber round to the forehead.  Maybe they’re trying to set us up to be suprised by IEDs later.

There are a ton of characters introduced right away and it’s a little tough to keep track of the unit hierarchy (though to be fair, I was multitasking which didn’t help).  I’ll definitely have to watch it again and pay a little closer attention.

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Sunday morning we went out to the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum in Hamilton.  In high school, I read everything I could get my hands on about WWII, particularly the air war in the European and Pacific Theatres.  To be able to see some of the aircraft I’d read so much about up close was a bit of a thrill.

Three things really stick in my mind:

  • First of all is the museum’s pride and joy, the Avro Lancaster.  Shortly after we entered, a klaxon sounded as the hanger doors parted for FM213 to return from a morning flight.  All we could initially see was a silhouette with the sun behind her.  The Lancaster was the workhorse of the RAF Bomber Command, though best known for its role in the famed ‘Dambusters’ raid.
  • The North American B-25J Mitchell, the first aircraft to strike the Japanese home territory in the daring Doolittle Raid.  Though it did little material damage, the lift given to American morale was immeasurable.  It’s amazing that an aircraft that size was able to lift off a WWII-era carrier flight deck.
  • The Rolls-Royce Merlin engine.  Powering the Lancaster, P-51 and the Spitfire along with over a dozen other aircraft, variants were also used to power British motor torpedo boats and even a tank.  More than any other engine, the Merlin powered the Allied war machine in Europe.

It was very cool–I’d love to ride in the B-25 someday, but $650 is a little steep for a 20minute hop.

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We finished Sunday afternoon with a short visit to the Winona Peach Festival where we dug into chili cheese fries, a peach milkshake and a peach sundae, and grabbed a basket of peaches which will eventually make their way into a pie (if I can keep my hands off them long enough).  Mmmmmmm pie.

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Responses

  1. Finished watching the 7th and final episode of Generation Kill Sunday night. It was an excellent series, but too short. My wife bought me the book yesterday so I won’t feel so jarringly deprived of the characters, who you pretty much sort out by the 2nd or 3rd episode. Or maybe the 5th. OK, some I didn’t really remember until the 7th. But it’s still really good.


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