There was a nostalgic article this past weekend in the Houston Chronicle about Timber Cove subdivision. It recounted how many astronauts lived there, what transpired when the media showed up and how the families of non-astronauts carried on with their lives.
It was poignant in the stories they told of when there were disasters and how all came together to protect and assist those left behind.
That article, along with the photo posted today of the mock shuttle being brought up the Intracoastal Waterway this week to its final resting place at Johnson Space Center, brings back LOTS of memories.
Yes, we lived there in the "glory days". The flags in each yard, almost always. The pride at what was being done and accomplished. The "splash down" parties. Knowing many of the astronauts and families who were our neighbors. My kids' school mates and some were in my Girl Scout troop.
The great thing was we were inwardly proud but we never imposed on them or invaded their privacy. Those I knew considered it "just a job". A funny memory from long ago is being introduced to an astronaut. The wrong name was used. He looked at me and said, "You meet one astronaut, you've met them all" with a smile.
It WAS an amazing time. I think we knew it even then. But, as time goes on and the Lunar Rendevous Festival continues, among other area events, the historical nature of it all has begun to take on even more significance.
I hope to be standing on Clear Lake on Friday to photograph this mock shuttle as it passes. Yes, it is the end of an era. I intend to place that photo with all the others I have that I took when the shuttle used to be piggy-backed to Florida. They would fly over JSC and our neighborhood and tip their wings. It always made me get a catch in my throat.
"To infinity and beyond " as Buzz Light Years says, and many a future astronaut.