Under the roof of Spreuer Bridge, 67 paintings dating from 1626 to 1635 represent a “Dance of Death”. Death, represented as a skeleton or as the “Great Reaper” urges everybody to dance with him, i.e. to die. Death makes no difference between old and young, churchmen and laymen, rich and poor. This kind of paintings were often placed on cemetary walls. They expressed people’s feeling in the face of death especially during times of epidemic pestilence and were widespread all over late medieval Europe, but only very few examples have survived to date. The fascination for this theme has not completely gone, however, as the dedicated German website www.totentanz.de shows. Lucerne’s Dance of Death was designed by chief painter Kaspar Meglinger.
…from the Swiss Transport Museum.
From the signboard:
British Aerospace Spacelab Pallet F003/MD004
The use of pallets for transport is not restricted to rail trucks. During the 1980s, British Aerospace produced a series of pallets for carrying experiments and cargo on the American space shuttle as part of the European Spacelab programme.
To utilise the available space as efficiently as possible, the Spacelab Pallet is U-shaped like an aircraft container. The aluminium structure incorporates cooling panels, connected to a Freon circuit. Up to 5 pallets can be joined together, each with its own electricity and data connections. A special version of the normally fixed pallet can even be unloaded in space.
From information signboard:
Rotary snow-plough Xrot m No 100 Rotary Gotthard Railway GB 1895
The snow-plough body contains the boiler and a twin-cylinder steam engine driving the bucket wheel, which is nearly 3 metres in diameter. The cutting blades were adjustable to cope with the varying hardness of the drifts. The jet of snow that was hurled away could be directed as far as 90 m sideways and up to 18 m in height. This patent was developed by Leslie Brothers for the Rocky Mountains in North America, and was superior to competitive products available there.
You cannot conceive the many without the one… The study of the unit is among those that lead the mind on and turn it to the vision of reality.
I had just finished enjoying a lunch time bacon buttie when I heard a loud CRACK in the vicinity of the kitchen. The wind had just blown up outside, so I wondered if a branch had blown off a tree into the kitchen window.
I looked up and said, ‘what’s that?’ Mr C leapt up and said ‘I know what that is’ and dashed into the kitchen. When I entered the kitchen a few seconds later, I was greeted with a heap of glass on the kitchen floor underneath the cooker!! He had closed the oven door without turning the grill off…
After a few minutes dismay (which was more about it being so close to Christmas than the oven being broken) I found out the cooker details and Mr C phoned up the Hotpoint helpline. New glass is ordered but the systems were showing that the earliest date they could get an engineer out was 24th December!! When their computer systems are fully up and running (which they aren’t on a Sunday) they will check to see if there is an earlier slot that we can be fitted into.
After clearing the kitchen of smoke and glass we set off to a garden centre which was always the plan. I needed some Christmas cards and some candles because I couldn’t find anything suitable in Birmingham when I was there last weekend. When I left the garden centre the sun was going down and I was treated to this glorious sunset.
Clouds and Silver (or in this case Golden) linings
To mark the inauguration of the Swiss Museum of Transport in 1959, the railway and model railway enthusiasts of Lucerne built a model representing the Gotthard north access ramp between Erstfeld and Wassen. They put in around 30,000 hours of voluntary work.
Ascending the mounting through helical tunnels – the Gotthard railway model shows Erstfeld station, the two imposing bridges over the Chärstelenbach and the Intschireuss and finally the three helical tunnels near Wassen.
The model does not show the motorway since it depicts the landscape as it was around the end of the 1950s.
However, the locomotives and carriages making up the model trains are in some cases considerably newer.
The Swiss Museum of Transport is grateful to the railway and model railway enthusiasts of Lucerne for the newly designed 2007 Gotthard railway model in the rail transport hall as well as for its loving and expert maintenance.