Writer, Essays and Commentary

Astro-not me

Adventurous, brave, and patient mortals, I admire thee! Four such souls on Sunday blasted off for a 27-hour trip to the International Space Station. I can’t see taking 24-plus hours to go anywhere let alone into the final frontier. I’m no pioneer (obvs), but thankfully there are those more willing. Take these astronauts…

Those crazy kids compressed themselves into air-tight space suits, strapped themselves into one of the most claustrophobic spaces I’ve seen, and allowed themselves to be jet-propelled beyond the star I wished on a day earlier. I held my breath as they pushed buttons and calmly waited for the all-clear eight-minute mark meaning the engines performed as advertised and the capsule would (probably) remain intact.

There isn’t enough money on earth, nay, in the galaxy for me to do that. Even if there was, Sunday evening proved I wouldn’t be the best candidate for the job.

Visions of relaxation and a warm shower danced in my head. Winds occasionally whipped as a cold front came through causing lights to flicker now and then. I attempted to use mind control to will them to stay lit. Around 8:30, the room descended into darkness, for the umpteenth time this year, in a non-severe storm.

I immediately knew the cause — I love a sale and this week yogurt was 10 for $10. Every time I partake in this discount, the power goes out. There’s some kind of karma for over-enjoying yogurt? I won’t do it again!

I hoped that pledge plus the fact that the storm was short would return the power soonish. Last time this happened (yogurt sale in September) the power came back in a couple hours. The time before (yogurt sale in July) I lost more than half a day and an almost full frig. I hoped to save my yogurt this time.

Disappointed by the lingering darkness, I decided ’twas too early for bed since it’s not the 1800s on the prairie but ’twas also too late to not use a flashlight to do anything. The shower was out — all I need is to slip and fall in the dark. I decided to use my fully charged phone to check the power company website, let’s say frequently, and to read, with my tablet power dwindling, quickly.

In my world of simple pleasures, I was beyond disappointed that my night had been altered so drastically. Three hours, four, five. No lights. My eyes tired after finishing the book, my body and tablet batteries nearing zero. 2:30 a.m. Flashlight off. Sheets pulled up. Eyes closed. Big sigh.

Apparently, that amount of air leaving my body was enough to turn on the power! The hallway and the office illuminated. The heater fan started to spin, much to the delight of my socked yet chilly toes. If I’d known, I would have sighed hours before.

I took my relaxing shower, albeit delayed (see, I can rough it). Whilst sudsing, I couldn’t help but wonder: the power lines are underground (good) but connected to ones that aren’t (bad). A crow blows on them and poof! It’s a repetitive problem — why can’t they fix it?

We can put four people in a tube and hurl them faster than the speed of sound to live for six months in space, but the power company can’t figure out how to strengthen the grid so a zephyr with biceps doesn’t ruin a Sunday evening and/or a frig full of delicious yet cheap yogurt? (None of which survived, unfortunately.)

Don’t even get me started on not being able to listen the AM news station sans static in my car when it rains.

Wait, what? THEY HEARD ME! On Monday, KYW1060 AM will be available also on 103.9 FM! *faints* Technically, that isn’t solving the static problem, but I’ll take a work-around if that’s the best they can do!

 

This looks absolutely cavernous, but it’s not. Click the pic to see more from this mission. Watch the blast off, take a tour of the capsule (with Baby Yoda!), and celebrate the claustrophobia here. View NASA’s coverage here. Elon said COVID would be gone in April so… no link for him.

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2 Comments

  1. We live in a similar world to yours. The power lines are buried, the weather can be lovely or not– and suddenly we are plunged into darkness for no discernible reason. There we stay for minutes or hours, then *boom* the power is back on again. No explanation is ever offered. It’s maddening.

  2. ‘Tis maddening, and I’m sorry you have to deal with this, too. Maybe we can tell the space people that something space-y happens on the grid and get them to have at it and fix the damn thing.

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