Sep. 21st, 2012 01:34 pm
tikiera: (Default)
[personal profile] tikiera
It's the Equinox, we are in the limnal spaces.

How fitting that I saw the Endeavor today.

They are retiring the space shuttle to the California Science Center.  It's by the campus.

They flew the Endeavor over several Los Angelan sites today, and one of the was supposed to the science center and the city hall.  I work downtown.

So, my department was planning on going outside to see the Endeavor as it flew over Los Angeles today.

But the Big Boss had a better idea.

He got us all in the van and took us to campus.

And then we climbed stairs to the top of one of the parking structures.  One asthma attack complete with inhaler later (I thought it was fewer stairs than it was)...

It came from a different direction than we anticipated, but someone spotted it early so we watched it circle around Los Angeles and head out to the Hollywood sign. 

And then, I kept telling people it had to come back, it hadn't actually gone over the science center and according to the interwebz, it was actually going over the places they said it would.

I convinced them to wait.  And it came back.

And went right over our parking structure.  I do intuitive math in my head sometimes, and I computed the angle of the Hollywood Sign from where the Science Center was and had realized it would come very close to us...

...  the shuttle flew right over us.  Literally right over us.  just far enough to one side that I could make out the NASA on the plane it was riding.


It was awesome.  It was huge.  So very, very, very huge.  So very very low flying.  So very very right there.

Incoherent am I.

I got to see a piece of my childhood.    I was extremely passionate about space.  The day I found out that the Air Force didn't take people who needed glasses was a sad, sad day.  I was in elementary school.  Seriously

The very first real paper I wrote was an argument that the Challenger disaster should stymie our space program, because there was a psychological need for exploration in the human species, and space was a frontier, and we always lose people when we explore frontiers..

I was in middle school.  The teacher wasn't prepared for the psychology or the length or the science 'cause at the end I tried to prove that space spurred our scientific research.

I had a habit of being 'sick' on days that the news was going to broadcast space flights.    I watched a lot of them launch - not all of them were broadcast on our local news, but I would fake being sick when it did happen and I knew about.   It was always so exciting to watch them go into space.  I always believed someday I would too.

Intellectually I know the space shuttle was a flawed design, and it probably held the space program back.  But when I saw it fly overhead today, all of my memories of watching it launch all those times, of the feelings I felt as I watched people go where I wanted to...

It was awesome.


tikiera: (Default)

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