A Dream Come True

NASA, 08/27/2016

Saturday morning and we are off to NASA! I have waited for this all my life, can’t wait to see the Saturn Five and the Space Shuttle.

Up early for our scheduled pick up, I am champing at the bit to get out there. It’s a long bus ride out there as we had to do several other pick-ups along the way, the driver is hard case really funny and he keeps us entertained.

Good thing about doing the other pick-ups is we get to see the Disney resorts and oh my god they are massive, they make our hotel which is huge look like a backwaters.

We arrive at the Space Centre at around 10AM interesting ride out there getting to see some of the Orlando countryside. Very Flat and fill of swamps and lakes.

We spent the first hour or so at the visitor complex where we got to meet an astronaut, we were all sat down in a small auditorium, I made sure to sit at the front as I was excited to see one of my childhood hero’s. I wasn’t disappointed the Astronaut Sam Gemar was a shuttle pilot and I got to ask him a question so I was thrilled, feeling like a kid in a candy shop today this is fantastic.

From the visitor centre we got on a bus tour which took us out to look at Shuttle Launch Sites, the Space X headquarters, the Crawlers which took the Space Shuttle to the launch sites and many other iconic sites including the vehicle assembly building where the strips on the US flag are large enough to drive a bus on, enormous scale of everything is mind-blowing.

Next stop the Saturn 5 centre; we went through mission control for the Apollo missions where a recreation of launch day awesome!!

We walked through into the Saturn Five hanger, and as you go in, you see the Five main engines and it is staggering how big these things are, just as your mind takes that in you look down the length of the rocket and realise that this is indeed the largest machine ever made it’s just huge.

The display is so well done, with all of the mission patches hanging alongside the Saturn Five and a Lunar Lander and Command Module.

We had lunch which was surprisingly good after reading the reviews at the café style food place right under the Saturn Five, how amazing to sit having lunch under stage 3 of the Saturn!

Picked up some mission patches from the souvenir shop, then headed back out to get the tour bus.

Back to the Visitor Center and off to the Shuttle Display for my first glimpse of a Space Shuttle.

There is an Audio Visual presentation culminating in a big screen movie of the shuttle missions then the screen pulls back and you realise the actual shuttle Atlantis is behind the screen you were just watching, it’s a jaw dropping moment for someone like me who has been a lifelong space fan, I have to admit to getting quite emotional and tearing up a little.

Words cannot describe the absolute feeling of excitement and joy I had at that moment and looking around the shuttle was an amazing experience.

We had time to look around the rocket park and quickly caught some of the Martian display. Back on the bus and heading back to the hotel.

A Long day after we get back we relax at the hotel then we wandered over to CityWalk and grabbed some dinner.

Tonight’s food place of choice the Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar and afterward some drinks at the Shoreline Bar overlooking the water, this is where I discovered the Buffalo and Bacon which is a Bourbon drink with Bacon fantastic!!!!

Travelling with a good mate, meeting an astronaut, seeing Saturn V and Shuttle and finally a bacon Bourbon, Best Day ever!


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