As a junior in high-school, I was so excited to go to engineering camp, Engineering State to be precise, because I figured there wouldn’t be that many girls there. May the odds be ever in my favor. I was right! There were soooo many boys there. And they were soooo nerdy. This was well before I developed a taste for nerd flesh, so I definitely remember pretending I had to run to the bathroom to get out of rhythmic swaying (definitely not dancing) with the halitosisy tall guys at the dance. But at least I got to build a rocket.
Have I mentioned that I love astrophysics? I would say cosmology, but people always think I meant to say cosmetology for some reason.
Anyway, we’ve been here before, but Flufferella is finally old enough to appreciate most of the exhibits at the Air and Space Museum. Lah! We sat down at a learning center together, and I explained the fundamentals of spectroscopy to her. At first she was frustrated and wanted to leave, but I wouldn’t let her. I explained it again, and her light bulb went on. We played around with the spectra of different stellar elements together for several minutes. Total Nerdvana. Her enthusiasm did not last through redshift like mine, but there’s always next year. She does love science, so maybe there’s hope someday she can be completely underwhelmed by the options at an engineering camp herself.
We spent a good amount of time in the fundamentals of flight room trying to catch exotic diseases from the many hands-on exhibits. The boys greatly enjoyed the one where you pull on things, the one where you bang stuff, the many, many ones where you tap on glass, and of course, the ones where you press, smash, or pound on buttons.
The scant one minute each of the children was allowed in the cockpit of the Cessna did not disappoint.
The best part of the whole day, though, was when all 5 of us took a quiz on space exploration trivia, and somehow Peppers legitimately tied Kent for first place!!!!
I maintain I would have wasted them both had I not been trying to read the questions to Fluffy and help her, thereby missing my own entry time. Or maybe Peppers is just more intelligent than us all. From now on whenever neither Kent nor I know the answer to something, we’re retiring our usual phrase, “To the internet!” and replacing it with, “Let’s ask Peppers!”
I will also admit to tearing up watching the real time footage of the last Discovery launch. It’s so inspiring to think of the work of all the thousands of people that goes into shooting a handful of humans out of our atmosphere and into the great beyond. Humans are so amazing when they work cooperatively–or should I say competitively, for don’t we owe some of mankind’s most stunning achievements, plus, you know, Teflon, to the Cold War? I didn’t full-on cry like when I first saw the floorplan for my house, but I definitely got misty. This was my favorite trip to this museum. Age 7 gets a big thumbs up.
Also, Kent and I are going back to watch Interstellar in IMAX 3D.
(Pardon my construction dust and hideous mismatched themes on the web page. Spring cleaning my blog is a fat pain that always takes longer than I think.)