How did I miss this flying over my neighborhood?
I remember taking a road trip to the Kennedy Space Center to see a shuttle launch. It was the summer I worked in Walt Disney World. (No, not as a character. It was actually an internship, and I was a Recreation Hostess, which turned out to be a much more menial and hands-on job than expected.)
What an appropriate time to see a space shuttle taking off for flight – in the midst of going to work every day at a place where “fairy tales can come true” (and where our housing, Vista Way, was referred to as Vista Lay).
My new friends and I sat on the other side of the water with a view of the launchpad, the countdown clock, and the thousands of tourists who had come to watch. Our legs dangling over the edge of the concrete wall, we chatted about all of the things important to twenty-year-olds.
The countdown clock ticked down, the seconds seeming longer than usual.
The ground shook. The rocket screamed and roared.
There was an immense flame, and all of that beautiful puffy white smoke.
Everyone was silent.
As the shuttle went further up, and got smaller and smaller, so did my place in the world.