Thursday, August 21, 2014

Trained at Space Camp

I decided I was going to celebrate my birthday by going to the CA Science Center and seeing the space shuttle Endeavor and convincing them to let me take it for a spin. I was successful on two counts. Look, I've seen Space Camp, which means that I know that an average person like me can fly a space shuttle. It wasn't that hard for Joaquin Phoenix to do and I'm obviously smarter than him. But they were unmoved so I just took pictures instead.

First of all, it's massive.

I mean, of course it's massive. It had to carry large things into space like satellites and whole sections of the ISS.

And it's covered in scorch marks and dents from space debris hitting it, which is terrifying and awesome.

It's a pretty good exhibit. There's lots of information on all its missions and a time-lapse video of the trek it made across town from LAX to Exposition Park (here's an abbreviated version). I spent about an hour in the hangar just checking everything out (I think I may be better alone at museums because I could spend days in them when the rest of my party has died of dehydration waiting for me to finish up.) But here's where it could improve. They could let me fly it. Or at the very least, they could let me inside of it. Is it too much to ask to sit in the captain's chair and fiddle with the instruments? While wearing space suit? And a head set so I could talk to Mission Control? I don't think it is. I would pay extra for it. Certainly more than the nothing I paid to get in. 

Later I went over to the IMAX theater and watched the 3D movie on the Hubble telescope. And Sweet Land of Liberty! You have to see this movie! It is so awesome!!! I have a wacky astigmatism that makes 3D movies hard to watch but after a while I was just so mesmerized by what I was seeing that I hardly noticed my eyes wigging out. 

And finally, I saw a lot of really cool things that day but these early astronaut boots were among the coolest. Double laces, zipper, and silver. Sign me up!


Rach said...

I love that you went to a space museum for your birthday. Also, that shuttle really is huge. Thanks for sharing your love of all things space. It's made me want to go to a space museum. But I still don't want to go on a rocket into actual space. It's way too scary for me. When you do go to space, though, I'll be fully supportive, as long as you don't return all young and beautiful when I'm 90 years old.

Laura said...

Those boots remind me of our trip to the Liberace museum a few years ago. Who knew he was actually an astronaut?