So some sort of proper digestion of what happened today. Today was day 1, although the unofficial Day 1. I handed over my fingerprints to the US government for the second time in two days to get the badge that’s above and then made use of our complimentary entrance to the Kennedy Space Center’s Visitor’s Complex. Essentially we pretended to be tourists for the day.
I went to Kennedy about 6 years ago so knew what to expect. The Rocket Garden is as wonderful as ever, holding a couple of extra relics from missions gone by. The food was as expensive as any other Florida based theme park. And there’s been a new addition in the past 6 years. The Shuttle Launch simulator ride.
The highlights of the day though mainly centred around the less ‘theme parky’ stuff. We bumped into the person that looks after this nasa_ames twitter account and also bumped into some of the people testing and building NASA’s Orion crew module.
He was talking about the testing of the launch abort system that’s still going on, even of the research and production of the rocket to go with it isn’t happening.
The other highlight was the standard NASA bus tour. We’re getting one that’s a little more in-depth tomorrow but it was still good to get as close as the public can to the pad less than 24 hours after arriving in the US.
There was a small fire going on while we were driving along pretty close to the press site by the looks of it…
and there were some interesting helicopters flying around chucking water at it, so I’m hoping the tweetup tent (or twent) is still in one piece for tomorrow’s activities.
If you want to follow along yourself loads of it is being streamed here from 12PM EST (about 17PM BST) feel free to tweet me if you can see me in the crowd. If you do tune in you’ll see some interesting chats from astronaut Clay Anderson (@astro_clay), Dana Hutcherson, Endeavour’s Flow Director and Tara Ruttley who works on some of the science for the Space Station.
I took loads more pictures today but I’ve decided to hold them back and post them as galleries in the days after the launch. Like i said earlier if you listen to either BBC York or BBC Norfolk’s breakfast shows you’ll hear me in the morning from my wonderful beach house here in Cape Canaveral. And if you listen to their drive shows I might be able to do a couple of interviews into their Drive programmes live from the press site itself.
That all depends on NASA WIFI though, they might be able to launch a rocket but they might not be able to handle 150 people excitedly using their internet.
Catch you tomorrow