On Memorial day, I got to travel through space and time!!!
Zoom back to the past and then onto the future.
Two weeks prior, I entered a drawing for a 6 pass ticket for the intrepid Air and Space Museum.
Last Wednesday when I was researching some jobs and checking email, I heard the reference librarian leave a message for the winner of the tickets to the Intrepid. Wondering if it was me, I asked. She said no. I quickly forgot about it.
When I was home 24 hours later, I received a phone call stating that I was the lucky winner of these tickets.
I have a tendency to win these things from the time I won an on air $1,008 on WEBE108 for being the 8th caller, to circuses and other fascinating prizes. When I called my mom to tell her the great news, she says that usually happens for me.
I quickly got onto it and called my long time friend from University days and told her of the good news and if she wanted to go with her family. I got a quick yes and at the end of the day, the party of 6 was booked.
Getting started that morning took a little while since there was a nasty thunder and lightning storm. A few minutes before I left to catch the train, my friend called and said " Better wait a few hours before the storm passes. Watched weather channel for a bit and then when the storm calmed down and houses stopped shaking, we rendevouzed our ways towards the train to meet up in Greenwich and then onto Grand Central. I was instructed to catch the first carriage and then my friends could meet me there. As the train pulled up to the track, it was moving way too fast. What I did was hop into the middle carriage and then called my friends and said, "I am in the middle carriage." At Greenwich, my friend Phil hopped onto the next carriage and found me and I walked back one. Even with the carriage reference going back to the reference of England.
When we got to the Intrepid, the line was quite long. When I asked where do the library patrons go to go through the line, we
were whisked through the VIP line and were able to flow right through;thus, not getting stuck in that wonderful heat and humidity.
The Intrepid was massive when looking up at it from the street level and the command deck was positioned directly on top of the boat. It was painted in green and grey paint and had a big white 7 on the boat. From the upper deck, we could see the skyline of New York City well and down by the water was the British Concorde at the dock. A big narrow red and white plane parked in its parking place neatly. Looking almost like how Captain Sully parked his plane onto the same Hudson River that the Concorde was sitting next to.
We saw many old planes that were in the hanger of the Intrepid and they were painted in bright blues, yellows, whites and reds and black. There were several long planes with wide wings and a small cockpit window. Some of them looked very similar to the ones that I saw in a Stratford Air show of the Corsairs a few years back. But these were on the deck of the USS Intrepid, the same deck that saw much of the fighting during the Pacific Theatre of World WarII.
We lined up in front of several screens and there was a film with some footage from Kamakaze days. The red sirens went off and the alarms rang too with the announcement of all hands on deck. Also, there was smoke that filled the deck as if the actual fight was going on. Soldiers who used to be on the boat spoke of the great effort some of the 69 men made who died while serving our country.
Being fleet week, there was another large aircraft carrier parked at the next dock of the Intrepid. At first when I heard fleet week, I thought it was going to be windjammer type boats sailing along the Hudson River. But no, it was the BIG War boats.
We saw one of the 95 year old men sitting in his wheel chair in a bright yellow t=shirt that served on the blue plane. He posed for our photographs and talked a little bit of the experience. His arms were narrow but well worn from his years of service and his enthusiasm beamed forth for what he had done with the service to our country. Especially on Memorial day to see that and to see all the men and women walking proudly around the city Streets with their heads held high in their uniforms. As the song by James Greenwood comes true, "I am proud to be an American for I know I am free!"
Looking at the missiles and the boating gear from this era inspired me and made me thankful on Memorial Day for the sacrifices that our men and women in our Armed Force made for our country to be free.
Later on, we were whisked away to Mars. On a space shuttle onto the Red Planet for dinner. Several times during the day, the special dinner was hinted. When I heard we were taking a shuttle , I was wondering was this going to be like they do it in the movies or not with special ships to restaurants. We got to the Mars 2112 building and it looked ordinary on the outside.
When we arrived, we had our own private trip to the Red Planet in our shuttle with the announcing and descriptions of the trip. When we arrived to the Planet Mars and the doors to our shuttle were opened, we were greeted by the Martians and commanders of the Planet.
We were seated at a big round table and we ate our meal nestled in a red grotto. The seats were silver and red. Several of the space aliens were walking around and shook our hands as they greeted us without words. My friends daughter, Willow, loved it and bounced around and bonded with CutePie. Cutepie alternated with sadness and great joy when hand gestures covering her face or bouncing them outward towards Willow in a hug. The huge webbed hands were soft and smooth to shake. Very welcoming of us and also a little reticent also. But they get many intergalactic visitors each and every day.
It was a joy to see life during this time travel from a 6 year old's perspective. It is good practice for when I visit my niece in Minnesota as she graduates from elementary school at the age of 12. There is so much wonder with the youth and to capture it only for 1/2 day is so precious. And for the first time meeting her as well.
As I was seated at the round table, I pulled out my cell phone and called my mom like I did when I was at Yankee Stadium once. I told Mom I am on Mars for dinner. She did not quite know what to make of it. I had to explain later on in the evening what I meant for my humor is not always great-even in the reality of the moment!!!
Mars 2112 was covered in Red Rock and there were screens showing vast expanses of wasteland of green and blue hazy atmospheres and beautiful orange and yellow sunsets and sunrises. There was music on Mars and it sounded a lot like the music here on earth. Yet, our aliens could not lip synch the music somehow.
At the end of the journey, we went through the land of the red rock and passed a sign saying, welcome back to earth. Not as exciting as the arrival in our space ship. But returning to earth was good as I have much to do. A quick way to go to Mars while still being grounded on earth but somehow transported by the imagination into the future while being in the present moment.
A definite fun way to spend the day traveling back to the time of war and then forward to the future. Seeing how life was lived and also how life could be lived in the 22nd century. Imagine how our citizens of the world would have felt back in 1945 if we told them what is happening now.
A good way to view life of going from one part of the world to the next-always in anticipation of what is in store for us.
For I am definitely proud to be an American for I know I am free. For the red blood and sacrifice of our soldiers even at this very moment. Willing to fight for us earthlings and aliens as well.