Friday, July 8, 2011

to the moon and back

Side note: I wrote this post last night prior to this happening. I hope you guys got to watch the launch. I was able to see just a few minutes and was able to actually catch its lift off. Such an incredible moment in history...I'm so sad its over and so sad I couldn't be there. But was thrilled to watch it on tv!

When I was in 5th grade, my mom and sister went on a mission trip to Charleston, SC. I was too young to go, and so my dad decided we would take our own trip. At the time I had two interests and two career options in mind (…funny that I didn’t take either path that I was so determined to take at the age of 9. So what were they? Well first, I loved dolphins and thought it would be the coolest thing ever to be a trainer at Seaworld or a marine biologist. Second, I wanted to work for NASA as an engineer. So where did we go? FLORIDA! My dad drove me the 10 hours to Orlando, where we spent a full week exploring Sea World and NASA…the best of both worlds. We stayed in Cocoa Beach, enjoyed the sand and sun, and then took day trips to each location to see the sights. I remember loving the dolphins and whales at Sea World. And at the time they were just starting the space station at NASA so we got to see the building where they were constructing those modules that would house the astronauts. My favorite part was getting to see a rocket lauch (not shuttle) from Jetty Park.

When I heard that the last shuttle launch was scheduled, my dad and I fully intended to drag our spouses with us to Florida to see the last ever launch. We booked the hotel rooms, flipped around work schedules…and then were heartbroken. It was originally supposed to be June 28, but was postponed to July 8. Tomorrow.

I wish I could watch the launch in person, or even on TV but I’ll be at work. So I’ll settle for a DVR version. But I will say I’m sad that this is the last launch, that the era of watching shuttle launches is ending, and that my kids will never get that opportunity. I’ll never get to share that moment with my dad or take my kids to see a launch like he did for me. It was probably one of the best trips I’ve ever been on, and so special to spend a week with my dad. Tomorrow will be a great moment in our country’s history, so for those of you who have tomorrow off…be sure to watch the launch!!
Click the Link above for coverage from NASA.
Space shuttle Atlantis ready for its journey. Photo courtesy of

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