30 May 2007

Some Chicago photos

I didn't take too many photos in Chicago, partly because the museums I went to, particularly the ones of the Museum Campus, frowned on photos.

Also, Sarah won't have any time for museums/sightseeing in Chicago during her training.

But I found some things relevant to Sarah anyway...

At the Museum of Science and Industry, I really wanted to take a closer look at its Boeing 727 exhibit. And here it is. This was the 17th one off the line (out of a total of 1,832), and flew for United Airlines from 1964 to 1991. This being a very early model (727-100), it's shorter and differently configured compared to the ones Sarah ends up working, which are the 727-200A's built in the late 1970s.

Unfortunately, most of the interior had been re-configured into interactive exhibits, and few crew provisions remained on the plane. This intercom system, located between the rear lavatory and the rear emergency stairs, would be familiar to Sarah. I could picture her reciting the safety demonstration (memorization of which is required at the flight attendant training!) in her delightful alto voice, using this headset, as her coworkers donned oxygen masks and pointed at the exits.

The economy class passenger cabin is partially preserved. The seats themselves are exhibits, housing interactive games for museum visitors to teach the flight dynamics; the monitors were failing, however. Also, aisle seats have been removed to widen the aisle.

The overhead lights and vents are here. The orange button at the bottom would be for calling Sarah.

My final museum stop in Chicago was the Art Institute, well known for its breadth of world art collections. There was a good collection of Asian Art, including this statue of Kannon (Japanese Kwan Yin). Sarah won't learn about Kwan Yin until years later, when she does Asian assignments, but Kwan Yin will surely be a role model for Sarah.

Trivia: According to Wikipedia, Kannon is the namesake for the electronics company Canon.

More Kwan Yin statues, these are Chinese. The left one is an early, male version from the 500s, while the one on the right is a female version from the 900s. Sarah will appreciate knowing a transgender deity (in this case, the bodhisattva of compassion), and by extension, finding out about the Buddhist belief system, as she goes on Asian assignments.

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