A gentleman of the press comes to visit

Trip Start Jun 15, 2013
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed
4021 Simms Avenue (Diane's house)

Flag of United States  , New Mexico
Thursday, October 3, 2013

Those of you with a long memory will recall that I posted a blog with the above headline on June 28.  I was in Washburne, North Dakota, when Michael Johnson, editor of the local Leader-News, came to interview me, while I was enjoying my stay in the city park overlooking the Missouri River.  He wrote an article, which was published in a subsequent issue of the paper.  Recently I (finally) requested a copy of the article, and he immediately sent it to me.  I'm glad to post it on the blog today.  Thanks, Vivianne and Michael!
Last Monday, my first full day in Albuquerque after my return, Diane took me to the Old Town, where we had a delicious lunch at the Church Street Cafe.  In addition to a margarita I had real Mexican food:  a Combination Plate comprised of chicken enchilada, pork tamale, and vegetarian relleno.  Servings are very big here and very spicy.  As a newcomer to Mexican food, I know I should be more careful in the future and not eat big portions, but I survived the ordeal.
The next day, Tuesday, my cracked front window shield was replaced.  Meanwhile Diane and I went to see the movie 'Jobs' about Steve Jobs (1955-2011), the founder of Apple Computer.  Both of us liked it and can heartily recommend it to anyone interested in focused, passionate, hard-driven personae who left this earth a very different place.  Jobs had his repulsive sides but was clearly a beacon for everyone who worked with him.  (Tickets cost $1 - a bargain!)
Afterwards I went to the Albuquerque Museum to see a recently opened exhibition of Afro-American art comprised of more than 100 pieces created by black artists between the 1920's and 1990's.  Below you will see some photos from this interesting exhibition.
Yesterday I went to 'The National Museum of Nuclear Science and History'.  Rita and I had been there in May, but there's so much to see that I just had to return.  Some of you will know that Los Alamos, north of Santa Fe, was the center for development of the nuclear bombs during 1943-45.  There were full-size replicas of both 'Little Boy' (dropped over Hiroshima on August 6, 1945) and 'Fat Man' (dropped over Nagasaki three days later).  There were also informative displays of the pre-history of the nuclear bombs, including information that the Danish physicist Niels Bohr came to this country in January 1939 and informed the American physics community that nuclear fission of uranium had taken place in Berlin just recently.  The overwhelming number of historians now concur that the two bombs compelled the Japanese government to surrender on August 14, thus saving hundreds of thousands (maybe millions) of lives because the planned invasion of Japan on November 1, 1945, was now unnecessary.  Incidentally, the museum has no information about the Soviet atomic espionage that took place in New Mexico.  Klaus Fuchs, Ted Hall, and David Greenglass provided ample information to their KGB couriers during 1944-45 about the bombs being developed at Los Alamos.  The Soviet plutonium bomb that was exploded in August 1949 was an exact copy of 'Fat Man'.  Why this strange omission in the museum's otherwise exhaustive displays?  But in the museum's shop I picked up an interesting book:  E.B. Held, A Spy's Guide to Santa Fe and Albuquerque, University of New Mexico Press, Albuquerque, 2011.  In a compact format it tells about all the conspiratorial meetings between the spies and their couriers including when and where they took place.  
On Saturday the big Balloon Fiesta begins.  600 hot-air balloons will rise into the air.  This promises to be a great sight.  More about this later.                
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Donald Versaw on

Hi Jenz.
Just finished reading your message from ABERQ. Very interesting and enjoyable. You are justly pleased to visit the interesting places and exhibits of the countries Nuke stuff. I guess I missed my chance to take that in. I noted your mention of N.Bhore. ? sorry can't spell it - was reminded his great work dated 1939. At that time I was a lst yr. student at NWU enrolled in Gen Chem 101. Our professor mentioned him and his theory several times. Also, I suppose the Quantum Theory. I told my dad (Rita's Grand Father) about how a small lump of coal could, potentially, power a large ship like the QM around the world several times. The most powerful thing in his live at the time was a team of beaiutiful Belgian draft horses of which he was proud.

I missed reading your mention of having gotten a broken windshield on your pretty red car. Shall conduct a review. Glad you have gotten it repaired

Want to appologize for my comments about your camera. I've found that most pictures from it are in fact good files. I printed out one of June Lake and thepretty copy of the desert sunset in the current issue. It's just that they don't come up very well on my monitor. I don't have any idea how come. I figure Rita has already confirmed the pictures are just fine. Sorry about that. Continue to be careful and safe so you can enjoy the rest of your travel adventure,

Don aka "UNK"

Jens on

Dear Don (aka Unc),
Niels Bohr (with John Wheeler) published in article in the Physical Review on Sep. 1, 1939, in which he showed that only the rare isotope Uranium-235 is fissionable. U-235 is very difficult to separate from the much more abundant U-238, so Bohr at the time thought that an atomic bomb was not feasible. The people at Oak Ridge, Tennessee, proved him wrong, which he, of course, realized when he came to this country at the end of 1943. In 1913 he had expanded on Ernest Rutherford's theory of the atom, which then became the Rutherford-Bohr theory, which we all know today (a small nucleus surrounded by electrons). I'm sure your teacher lectured about both.
I thoroughly enjoyed meeting you and your charming Californian family, when Rita and I came to visit. I look forward to seeing Rita again at her new apartment in Kenosha at the end of the month before I return to Denmark.
Best regards, Jens.

Georgia Strickfaden on

Hi Jens!
Welcome back to New Mexico. It's been fun being a part of your travels vicariously. Hello to Rita, too, when you get back to where all of those Danes are. Every time I mention Niels Borh on tours, I think of you. There are also a lot of Europeans and Scandanavians renting American "muscle cars" like your convertible and traveling Rt. 66; many of them detour up to Los Alamos for the nuclear history here. It is quite enjoyable meeting them, as it was you & Rita on your journey through. It sounds like you'll be returning home at the end of October? You have enriched many lives here in US. Thanks! Georgia, Tour the Atomic City by Buffalo Tours. tours@buffalotoursLA.com

Jens on

Hi Georgia, thanks for your very kind comments. I plan to return to Los Alamos on October 13 and spend a couple of days there. I hope to see you again then. Jens.

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