Sunday, September 23, 2012
The End of an Era
Friday marked the end of an era. Space Shuttle Endeavour http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_Shuttle_Endeavour took her last ride, piggyback on a Boeing 747, accompanied by two fighter jets, on a tour of some of California's iconic landmarks, giving all of us who live in one of those areas a "once" chance (not a once-in-a-lifetime chance even) of witnessing this historic event.
Around 9:30, we drove down a few miles to be closer to JPL and decided that a parking lot by the local Trader Joe's would be a good place to watch and wait. There were a few people already there, but soon others came and there was quite a crowd gathered. One lady had a transistor radio and kept us all updated on Endeavour's status. Four high school-aged girls walked by and asked her what "that" was that she was holding ~ they had never seen one before! We all chuckled and remarked how old we all must be!
Around noon time, anticipation was at a peak, as we knew Endeavor had just made its passby of Universal Studios and Downtown Los Angeles and was on its way to JPL. Then, off in the distance to the southeast, I spotted it and yelled out, "Here she comes!" It was thrilling to see and it ended up that we had picked a great spot, as Endeavour came straight towards us and right over our heads before making a turn and heading back down for her final approached to LAX. It was quite thrilling to say the least and I feel very fortunate to have been able to have seen this historic event, the end of an era.