Saturday, June 30, 2012

Zizz in Florida

Greetings, dearests-of-dears,

I love you all and miss you bucketloads.  Today I'm writing from Orlando, Florida, where I am miraculously back in Eastern Time (nothing quite says "welcome" as specially as being in the same time zone as home).  I'm exhausted from the past couple of days and ready to hit the sack for the night before driving back to Huntsville tomorrow, which will be, as they say, a trek.

Atlantis on her way from the OPF to the VAB =)
On Wednesday of this week, we (the Robotics Academy & the NASA Leadership Academy) met outside the UAH dorm lobby at 5:30 AM to begin the long haul to Florida.  We took an 11-seat van, which proved conducive to passing time quickly.  Some ways in which I passed time were sleeping, reading (The Wings of the Dove - Henry James), playing Uno!, playing Mafia, Contact, and jamming out to random songs on Joaquin's iPod.  In the evening we arrived in Cocoa Beach, Florida.  We went out as a group for Thai, and after this we went for a midnight stroll around the beach, where we saw a number of constellations and a pair of crabs.

The Launch Control Center @ Kennedy.
Thursday was our beach day (initially planned to also include a viewing of the Delta-IV launch, but they delayed that), so I spent all day on the beach - swimming, bodysurfing, sandpile-building, and... getting my very first sunburn ever.  In the evening we went out to eat as a group at a seafood place, where I had fried alligator, and after that we went to Ron Jon's Surf Shop, where we confused a little marklar[girl] who asked her marklar[dad] what marklar[we] were talking about.

Hogwarts Hogwarts Hogwarts Hogwarts Hogwarts!
On Friday we got up early to view the launch, which unfortunately was delayed to the point that we had to leave the viewing location without seeing it - we had to get to Kennedy Space Center for our tour.  I've been to KSC once before, when I was about 10 years old, and it was pretty awesome to see it again... this time as an aerospace engineer (can you believe... actually, it really blows my mind that the last time I went to KSC was a time when I had not yet decided to be an aerospace engineer, or even had the slightest interest in science, math, or engineering...).   We got to see Atlantis and Endeavour pretty close up and this was very exciting.

After KSC we drove down to Orlando, where a bunch of us relaxed in the pool at the hotel before going out to dinner at Downtown Disney, where we wandered for a bit listening to live music and eating ice cream.  I must say I'm beginning to understand the definition of vacation.  I feel like the past five days might have been all I needed to recover from last semester...

have you seen me this happy?  I don't think I have....
which brings me to today, Saturday, which we spent at Universal Studios's Islands of Adventure, which consists of Seuss Landing, Marvel-land, the Lost Continent, and most importantly... The Wonderful Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

I won't waste too many words on descriptions.  I walked through Hogsmeade.  I had lunch at Three Broomsticks.  I drank a glass of pumpkin juice.  I had a mug of Butterbeer.  I bought a wand at Ollivander's.  I flew around the Hogwarts castle... twice.  I smiled so much my cheeks hurt.

Today was a magical day. <3
Love you lots and lots and lots,


  1. ahhh cool cool!
    now we have both experienced our first sun-burns...further evidence that we're twins?

  2. awww that sounds wonderful dear :) glad to hear you're having a good time!