June 2nd, 2004


Florida pictures: Kennedy Space Center

Upon arriving in Orlando, we checked in at our hotel and sat down to discuss our plans for the rest of the day. Collapse )

The next morning, we drove to Cape Canaveral to visit the Kennedy Space Center. The thing that really stands out in my mind about the KSC is how big everything is. Even the small rockets are enormous. On the other hand, the space capsules themselves are unimaginably small. It's hard to believe that three adult men shared one of the Apollo capsules for eight days.

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As big as the rockets are, they can't begin to compare to the Vehicle Assembly Building. It's hard to conceive just how big that place is. How big is it? It's so big that the doors are taller than any building in Washington DC. It's so big that If not for a specially-design ventilation system, it would form its own weather inside the building. The launch gantries aren't exactly small either.

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The VAB had to be big to accommodate the Saturn V rockets, which were used to launch most of the Apollo missions. There was no way I could have captured the entire rocket in one picture; just getting the boosters required me to sit on the floor and shoot upwards at it. By comparison, the external fuel tank and solid rocket boosters used to launch the space shuttle are practically wee.

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count, ten, 10-A

Ten random things: June 2

Ten metahuman villains from the television show Static Shock:

  1. Hotstreak
  2. Ragtag
  3. Ebon
  4. Carmen Dillo
  5. Talon
  6. Shiv
  7. Slipstream
  8. Replay
  9. Kangor
  10. Ferret
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Florida pictures: Downtown Disney

We bid farewell to rustydog on Thursday afternoon, dropping her off at Orlando International Airport on our way back from Kennedy Space Center. We were, of course, sorry to see her go, but we got to enjoy a few extra minutes with her, because we couldn't find the entrance to the airport Hyatt, where she had arranged to meet some friends. In our defense, the signage was very poor.

Eventually we found the service entrance or something, hugs were exchanged, and rusty entered the hotel as the bolivers and I headed to Universal Studios CityWalk for dinner (at Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville, which was fine) and a movie (Shrek 2, which was wonderful). We also visited the Universal Studios Store, which, truth be told, was the main reason I wanted to go to the CityWalk in the first place. I was hoping to find a good souvenir for my brother there, but I was unimpressed with the selection of merchandise.

The next morning, we headed over to Downtown Disney to look for Uncle Scrooge merchandise at the World of Disney store, the largest Disney memorabilia store in the world. Shockingly, they had virtually no Uncle Scrooge items. I found a candle that pictured him alongside fifty other Disney characters. (Whoops, make that fifty-one; the carpet counts as a separate character!) And he was pictured on some chocolate money. Shocking! I bought the candle, but passed on the money. Once I'd made my purchases, I considered going into some of the other stores, but ultimately decided it was too damn hot. I did take time to look at the giant kaleidoscope and the steamboat, but mostly I just sat at a table under an umbrella while boliver and her husband thought about what to do once they dumped me at the airport.

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And then they dumped me at the airport.

So what have we learned? I've been to south Florida twice now, and I don't feel any particular urge to return, not do I see any compelling reason to return to Nassau. There may be some merit in visiting other Bahamian islands, but I'm done with Nassau. Cruises are fun, though. I'd like to return to the Keys, and I definitely need to get back to Orlando. Downtown Disney is nice and all, but I get the feeling there's more to this thing they call Disney World than just an entertainment and retail complex. And most of all, I learned that it's a hell of a lot of fun to travel with rusty and boliver.
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