Thursday, June 30, 2011

Last thoughts from the Paris Air Show

As I transition away from Paris Air Show mode, I'm taking a few minutes to sort through the many cool things I got to experience. A reception at the U.S. Ambassador's Residence, flight displays, visiting dignitaries and a few evenings wandering the streets of Paris with my very own Parisian tour guides.

One of the coolest things at the air show was the trip Raytheon sponsored for the winning Team America Rocketry Challenge team. The TARC kids were flown out to Paris to compete against the Brits and French, and had an opportunity to check out the sights at the show.

The U.S. air crew took great care of them, showing them the military aircraft on display.
TARC winners at Paris Air Show

The team was even let into the cockpits.
TARC winners at Paris Air Show

I also got to go on a tour inside Boeing's 747-8. The aircraft was a huge draw at the air show, and seeing inside the beast was truly remarkable. The interior is filled with row after row of computer stations that test thousands and thousands of variables during test flights.

The view from the plane was pretty awesome as well: here's a view into the U.S. military corral:
View from Boeing's 747-8

On the other side, the winglet for the 737 was just a foot or so away from the window.
View from Boeing's 747-8

The Paris Air Show is full of early mornings, hours of snarled traffic, uncooperative French security officials and frantic efforts to put out press releases, but is also such a cool experience for a young person. I'm so thankful to have a job that puts me on the ground in Paris for the show!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Back in the USA

I'm back in the USA after a ten-day stay in Paris and Switzerland. I had such an amazing time seeing the sights and visiting friends, and now have around 2,000 photos to show for it. I'll be whittling that down to the choicest of the bunch to share with you all.

While most of my time in Paris was spent working the Air Show (correct link to the airshow blog) I did have a few opportunities to enjoy the city (in large part due to my Parisian tour guide Maite).

The architecture in Paris is unlike anywhere I've seen. We simply don't have anything approaching the ornate facades adorning many of Paris's public buildings:
Paris architecture

Also something we don't have (to my knowledge) in the U.S.: catacombs open to the public. The catacombs under Paris are world famous, made up of old mines and tunnels up to a thousand years old. When plague struck Paris several hundred years ago, officials exhumed bodies from the mass graves and dumped them into the catacombs.

Today, the bones are piled high to the ceilings, organized by tibia, femur, skull, etc. 

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Bad Boy

I'm sorry, but the 747-8 looks like SUCH a badass,  can't help but continue posting pictures of it.
Bad Boy

Monday, June 20, 2011

Office View

Here's the view from my "office" - the AIA/DOD Chalet at the Paris Air Show. The new 747-8 Intercontinental was unveiled amidst much fanfare earlier this year, and this marks the first international appearance of the jumboliner.

New 747-8I

Sunday, June 19, 2011


I'm in Paris this week to cover the 2011 Paris Air Show! I'll be posting regularly from the AIA Airshow Blog, so be sure to check out what we've been up to over there.

The staff is staying at Hotel Regina.
Hotel Regina
Yes, the Louvre is our next-door neighbor!

This is not an American hotel chain by any stretch of the imagination. It's old world charm and impeccable service make up for the lack of high speed internet.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Capital Pride 2011

This weekend was Pride Weekend - and DC's Capital Pride put on quite the parade through the District. There were politicians, marching bands, drag queens and dancing boys. The crowds were wild with bead-lust, everyone clamoring to get the most, best, brightest and most flamboyant set of beads.

Here are some of the highlights from the parade:

The Gang
The a cappella gang headed downtown to see the parade together!

Dykes on Bikes!
We arrived just in time to see Dykes on Bikes!

Throwing beads to the crowd.

Devin's daughter Caira was quite the bead-magnet! (And first pride weekend at 11 months? Love it!)

Scoop your poop!

The drum major leading the first marching band.

Working hard in the muggy, summer heat.

Not sure what he's advertising, other than D&G underwear.

Lovely ladies.

Rugby! Also present: the gay crew team, with T-Shirts instructing, "stroke this."

Everyone's favorite gay sports bar brought a float.


Just wow. I cut a lot of images that were pretty NSFW.

Hayyy girl!

I don't think she was part of the parade, but she was still very entertaining to watch.

Power V.

DC Cowboys
The DC Cowboys brought their line dance to the parade again this year.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

TWC's 50th Anniversary

The Washington Chorus marked its 50th anniversary yesterday with a party at the Kiplinger's farm, Montevideo. The party is not to be confused with the Barn Dance (which sadly I will miss this year), but it was still great to catch up with my TWC friends.

TWC Party

TWC Party