Thursday, September 20, 2012

Shuttle Endeavour over Centerpointe

None of the public knew that it would happen like this, or in this exact place: out of the blue, literally, this stunning vision appeared - not once, but multiple times!
Shuttle Endeavour, riding piggy-back
and flying directly over Centerpointe. 
Yes, I took this pic while standing on Arlington Pointe,
without a telephoto lens.
Most folks knew that there would be some kind of flyover as the shuttle arrived in Houston yesterday en route to California, but for security reasons, there were few details given in advance.  Many of us figured it would involve a buzzing of the area around Johnson Space Center, and probably little else beyond that. 

What a surprise we got.  And that lack of foreknowledge made the surprise all the more special.
One of the farther-away passes,
in profile with the chase plane visible,
Centerpointe home in foreground.
It was easy to figure out who in Centerpointe was a stay-at-home (parent or home-based worker) or an off-duty shift-worker yesterday, because as soon as those droning engines became audible, people knew what it meant, and they started running out of their houses. 
View looking southwest down Arlington Pointe. 

The Mundane and the Magnificent: 
Endeavour stands in wild contrast
to the typical scattering of trash cans.
Note the position of the resident in the SUV in the photo above.  Somehow in the middle of this show, they had gotten themselves exactly cross-wise to the flow of traffic on Arlington.  And they just sat there like that for the duration, which was the only sane thing to do.

Anyway, it was definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and I'm so glad that I was right here to see it.  Houston may not have gotten a shuttle, but we sure got a "thank you" yesterday. 

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