Dining with an Astronaut

When I was looking at KSC’s website, I mummbled to myself, “Hmm, ‘Lunch with an astronaut…'”

“You can eat with an astronaut?” Good Man’s eyes shone.

“We’re going, aren’t we?”

“Oh yeah!”

KSC’s tickets are good for two days, so today we went back to the space center to eat with an astronaut. Before the lunch, however, I lost my sunglasses.

I’ve had these sunglasses for at least five years. I’m pretty sure they’ve gone to nearly every country or locale I’ve been to, so I freaked out. After looking in the shop where I was pretty sure I’d left them three times, and checking with lost and found, we found them in a handbasket. Thank goodness.

Unfortunately, we wasted an hour or so running around looking for my glasses, but it was almost perfect timing to start the lunch.

The lunch was really nice. The tickets were approximately $25 each and we ended up getting a lot of food for the price (salad, veggies, chicken in a gravy sauce, mac and cheese, chicken nugget-like things for the kids, drinks, dessert). During the meal, John Blaha, who did several shuttle flights and lived on the Mir for four months, was our speaker. He did a quick presentation about his experiences with NASA and then opened up the floor for questions.

I asked him what sort of culture shock he went through living with Russians in such a small space.

He looked a bit surprised at the question (I suspect he doesn’t get it much) and he answered it much like I would when asked about Koreans—he told me that he could talk for hours about Russians and culture shock, and then gave some examples.

After the lunch, which was about an hour long, there was an option to get photos taken. Kodak took our photos, but then they also used my camera (wha-hoo! Saved us $25 bucks), so we got this photo. I swear, he “smiled” like this for everyone.

With Astronaut John Blaha

Later in the day there was an option to get Blaha’s signature, but Good Man decided he didn’t need it (which was OK, since it was scheduled at 4:30 and it was a 4-hour drive home). Instead we finished visiting the places we didn’t see yesterday.

Rocket Garden

Imagine Sitting Inside of This for Days at a Time

Rocket Garden II

When we decided to leave, Good Man wanted to drive. I love the view from the passenger seat!

Driving Up A1A

While driving home, Good Man drove through (three) toll booths for the first time. He also drove on the interstate for the first time and did very well merging. He also drove in the rain for the first time! He drove 125 miles before handing the keys over.

Ahhh, having a husband who drives is wonderful!

First Time on the Interstate