Observations from San Diego on economic destruction from shutdown.

View directly underneath Coronado Bridge shows the arches in the support towers. Photo by James Ulvog.

It is sad to personally observe the economic devastation from the shutdown.

We spent a few days in San Diego last week. Stayed at a hotel downtown near the harbor. Saw several things showing the severity of the economic damage.

Air travel

For quite a long time airplanes have not been allowed to leave San Diego International Airport until 6:30. It is funny to hear the first engine rev up a few seconds after 6:30 a.m.

I have noticed on previous vacations that there is a string of airplanes lined up ready to leave right at the stroke at 6:30. The planes take off approximately 1 minute apart.

Fed-Ex transport at San Diego International Airport. Photo by James Ulvog.

I have noticed in the past that the every minute takeoffs run until about 6:50 or 6:55. That means there were somewhere between 20 and 25 flights scheduled to leave at first opportunity.

With the shut down of the economy the line of planes was finished at 6:36 a.m. one day and 6:39 the next.

By my rough approximation that means the first-available-time flights have dropped from 20 or 25 down to 6 or 9. My very rough guess is number of flights lined up for 6:30 wheels-up have dropped by somewhere between half and two- thirds.

Hotel occupancy

On previous trips the first level of the parking garage was extremely full, if not requiring us to go up to the second level.  This time about 90% of the parking spaces were available. Tragic.

Midway Museum. Photo by James Ulvog.


As we usually do when in San Diego, we went to the fabulous Midway Museum. It is an aircraft carrier which has been turned into a floating museum.

There are perhaps 80 aircraft on board ranging in age from early World War II to late Cold War. Lots and lots of wonderful exhibits.

The Midway was commissioned two weeks after the end of World War II and served until 1992.

Below deck areas were closed when we visited. That was sad but makes sense. Those areas require going up and down a lot of steep stairs and have lots of tight quarters. Would not be possible to keep the rope and metal handrails sanitized and maintain social distancing.

The good news is the museum was actually open so we could go on to the hangar deck and the flight deck. Still had a fun time, even without loads of delightful exhibits.

The sad thing is the number of people was a fraction of what I would have otherwise expected even considering it was midweek in late September.

Maritime Museum of San Diego in morning mist. Photo by James Ulvog.

Also went to the always delightful Maritime Museum of San Diego. The exhibits in the Berkeley ferry were closed, which was sad. As fully expected, the interior of the Soviet sub was closed.

Got lots of fun pictures from both of the museums, which you will be seeing in future blog posts.


In San Diego a lot of the restaurants have plenty of outdoor seating because the weather is pleasant enough to be able to eat almost every day of the year.

Restaurants with plenty of outdoor dining space were packed. Restaurants with little outdoor space were closed. We were still able to eat that several of our favorite restaurants.

It seemed a few restaurants were open for indoor dining. Not sure how that happened and I’ll not mentioned any names because I’m fuzzy on the legality of indoor dining while we were there.

This is in contrast to where we live. Restaurants are either completely closed or set up with limited outdoor dining for those who have room to do so.

The economic destruction from government orders keeping California closed continues to compound.

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