I almost stayed up last night to watch the landing, but fell asleep. Maybe tonight I’ll stay up to 2 am.
I was in that category of people reliving their childhood during the Columbia disaster. I was 6 or 7 years old (in the first grade) when the Challenger disaster occurred. I remember the principal coming over the PA system announcing something bad had happened, something with the words “space”, “challenger”, “NASA”, “tragedy” in the message. I didn’t put together what had happened until I got home to watch the news (I’m a very visual person). I remember people crying, some students and some teachers. No one in my class really got that upset, because we were all in the same boat – trying to figure out what had happened. I also remember falling asleep that night with my toy space shuttle in bed with me.
Back home, NASA does their Solid Rocket Booster (the 2 rockets along either side of the shuttle) testing about 30 minute drive from where I live. Every now and then, the earth would ramble and the wind would growl, and we would just shrug and say “NASA’s doing their testing.” If you recall correctly, issues with the O-ring in the Solid Rocker Booster caused the Challenge disaster. Each year we would take a field trip to NASA (the NASA just down the road) to eat space ice cream, look at a moon rock, and drive around a lot. And each year we would do a trip report about what we learned, with someone having to talk in detail about Challenger. There’s nothing like a 2nd-grader saying “Solid Rocket Booster” three times fast.
And as I try to figure out how to do CSS to remove the annoying calendar from my blog, Steve Robinson is the first person to podcast from space.
Good luck Discovery.