These are some pictures I took in Shillong Air Force Museum. There was a lot more other stuff, but this is all I’m going to upload for now and is also the more interesting of the lot.
Waking up on day 4, we were shortlisting the places we could visit. There were a few day tours, boat rides and places which interested us, but they were spread all over. We decided to have breakfast outside and got ready for it. We asked hotel staff for best way for transport and they suggested that we hire a car or a scooter or bike. There were couple of such places near the hotel. Went to one and the owner suggested that we rent a car instead of hiring one with driver as the latter will be twice as expensive, if not more. They had Wagon R, Swift, Jeep and a few scooters. We got a red Swift which seemed to be better choice. Although the car was not in a great condition, it worked just fine.
First thing we had to do after getting in was to get some fuel for the car before going for breakfast. The petrol pump was bit out of the way away from everything else. After getting some petrol, we drove back looking for some place to eat. Wifey did all driving in the trip as am not a good driver and lost my license a few weeks back. We stopped at a restaurant Bending Bamboos which had outdoor seating under a huge mango tree and a few others. Only one other table was occupied at the time. It was quite late for breakfast, so we decided to have something heavy. We ordered a rice dish with fish curry (king fish) and a local mix vegetable dish along with some pineapple juice. Pineapples in Goa tasted very sweet compared to slightly sour types that we get back here. While waiting for food to arrive, we decided to visit Indian Naval Aviation Museum in Marmugao near Dabolim airport. It was about 41-45 km from where we were and it took us about 70 minutes to reach there.
Compared to similar museum, Air Force Museum, Delhi the place is small and has lesser number of aircraft, gear, memorabilia and other stuff on display. But it’s one of a kind place and very interesting. The first noticeable thing on entering the gates is a Sea Harrier jump jet. There are a bunch of other planes which include Breguet Alize, Hawker Sea Hawk, De Havilland Vampire, HAL-HT2. The biggest one is the four engined L-1049G Lockheed Constellation. I’d like to see a Tu-142 whenever it’s retired, but I don’t think that they have enough space for more. Helicopters are represented by Kamov K-25, Westland Sea King, Chetak and a few others. Indoor section which covers two floors has a few old electronic warfare systems, sonobuoys, torpedos, bombs, radars, pictures and infographics about various events in the Indian naval history. Apart from that, there are a bunch of plane engines, helicopter engines, missiles and one UAV on display outside. Strangest object however is mockup of cockpit, labeled as a simulator outside bathroom. There are a number of other things, but will post more about the place in another post.
While taking first few pictures outdoors, I messed up a setting on camera and some pictures taken in sun came up too bright which I noticed later.
After coming back, we stopped in our hotel for some rest and freshening up. In evening, we visited Saturday Market of Calangute. It is an all night market held on Saturdays and goes on from dusk till dawn. Most of the stalls were selling touristy clothes, decorations, cheap jewelery, shoes, herbs and various other knick knacks. A large number of stalls were owned by foreigners who were mostly selling self-designed (?) clothes. Then there were Tibetans, local Goans, Biharis, Marathas and quite a few other groups all in the same place. A stage had live performance by various music artists going on, but was audible only in a small area. Food and drinks were available, but didn’t feel like eating there and most of it was very overpriced. We bought a few decorations, hats and some other touristy stuff before heading back.
This reminds me, I also got a sweet mug as a memento from the museum.
For dinner, we stopped at Torq, about 10-12 minutes walk from our hotel. A live band was playing which stopped within 10 minutes of our arrival, at about 10:30 pm. The place was half full when we arrived. The table near us was occupied by a group of 2-3 families. The main topic of discussion with them were the fights which 1-2 men of the group had while they were younger. Now that they were older, fatter and uglier, they wouldn’t stop yapping about it. The noise probably affected staff too as they mixed up our orders. I had ordered a spicy fish curry while wifey asked for non-spicy vegetable dish. Instead we got a normal fish curry and highly spicy vegetable dish. I was OK with less spicy fish curry but vegetable dish was too spicy for her to eat. The staff replaced the vegetable dish within a few minutes though and were very apologetic. Although service of the place was good, food was barely passable. Reached back to hotel tired and went to sleep soon after.
Air-to-air missiles: Astra, Vympel R-77 ( AA-12 Adder), Vympel R-73 (AA-11 Archer), Derby, Python-5