Yesterday, the baby of the Space Shuttle Fleet stopped in Houston to say good-bye to the men and women of the Space Program who not only designed her, but planned and operated her missions, and of course flew her. Luckily my office has a view of Ellington Field and I was able to watch her flybys and landing. A few of those pictures are on my Flickr page, however they were shot through a window and didn’t turn out great even with my zoom lens.
Wouldn’t you have loved to be the photographer riding backseat in the T-28 to photograph her around Houston? Talk about a thrill! Here is Endeavour over Johnson Space Center (photo credit: NASA).
I’d love to say visiting Endeavour was an emotional and moving experience. But, it wasn’t. It was a nightmare traffic wise just to get there. A trip that shouldn’t have taken more than 10 minutes in normal traffic flow took over an hour. I was really disappointed in the police’s lack of ability to set up a system of directing the flow of traffic. And, I know people who tried to get to Ellington and simply couldn’t because of the traffic or because by the time they arrived there in the evening they weren’t letting people on anymore. Something this monumental and significant should have been better planned.
Regardless, the short time I was able to stay at Ellington (because after all it was a work day) I managed to take some great pictures of my baby (well, I did dream of flying her one day when she became operational when I was in high school). I photographed her similar to how I photographed Discovery for her arrival at NASM. Up close and personal.
To see my full set of pictures from Endeavour’s stop over in Houston please visit Flickr.
This morning as I was headed to a doctor’s appointment I looked up in the sky to be surprised to see her flying one last time over JSC. That’s when the emotion hit. I cried “what a moving gesture” and well cried. Because? She’s the last of these phenomenal flying machines to fly across the country. If it wasn’t hard enough seeing the last Shuttle Launch last year, this surely hit home seeing one of these girls in the air for the last time.