I’m back! And we had a marvelous time, both on the cruise and afterward.
We relaxed a lot,
dressed up a little,
and I got to spend a lot of time with my sister
and the family (there were 16 of us).
After the cruise, Larry and I stayed with my sister in Bradenton Florida for a few days, and had even more fun. One of the neatest things we saw/did was a total stroke of luck and timing. We saw the space shuttle launching! Well, we were nearly 200 miles from the actual launch, but we still had a good view.
We’d just had dinner at a restaurant near her house, and were driving back at sunset. All of a sudden, she said “look at that UFO in the sky!”. We could see something through the trees, but it was hard to tell what it was. At first I thought it was a tall building crane, with the top glinting from the setting sunlight, since it was a diagonal silver line with a bright glow at the top. But as we got around the trees, we could see that it was definitely something bright and fiery in the sky, with a trail behind it. It looked like this photo, but more colorful from the sunset. I jokingly said that it looked like the Columbia. Then Larry said that the shuttle was supposed to launch, and we realized that’s what it was! We pulled over to the side of the road and I jumped out with my camera, but I was too late to get a photo of anything but the trail, which was already starting to fade and break up.
If we had left the restaurant even a single minute later than we did, we’d have missed it and thought we were just seeing a jet trail – and if we’d left the restaurant 5 minutes later, we’d have been at her house and wouldn’t have seen a thing.