Tuesday, March 08, 2011

I Didn't Wave Goodbye

So there I was, standing in the office parking lot, just a few cars, the flashing yellow light of the security patrol, and me, staring up at the sky like a tourist blocking a New York City sidewalk.

I moved past the streetlamps, down to the artificial water feature to get a clearer view of the sky. Being so close to Dulles airport, I was afraid I'd miss the show by fixing on the wrong moving light, only noticing the strobe after it was too late.

7:22pm. Right on schedule, high overhead (higher than I was expecting because I looked at the wrong elevation numbers), a bright moving dot. Space Shuttle Discovery. Up and over, and gone.

7:24pm. Following the same track, the International Space Station. (Though honestly, I thought the one was the other.)

Thinking, This is so cool.

Letting the sense of wonder displace work angst. Girl trouble. Random life noise.

Then remembering that I'm too old to be an astronaut. [Not the case, as it turns out, though it's ever more-increasingly unlikely.]

Then remembering that I don't have the temperament to earn the millions needed to buy my way into space.

But it was still a good few minutes in space.

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