Saturday, December 21, 2013

today: walking in space

The first of three scheduled spacewalks is underway today, as US astronauts Rick Mastracchio and Mike Hopkins begin external repairs on the International Space Station.

Outside the space station.

260 miles above the Earth.

NASA TV streams live online, with the view alternating between various ISS cameras, the ground control center, and

the astronauts' helmet cameras.

Today's walk began shortly after 7AM Eastern Standard Time, and is expected to go on for about 6 hours so, depending on where you are in the world, there may be plenty of time to tune in and watch the livestream for a bit if you are so inclined. As "night" becomes "day" becomes "night" again...the ISS orbits the Earth about 16 times in 24 hours.

I find it mesmerizing.



  1. Hectic if one really thinks about it! Seriously hectic what man can do. And hectic what he can't do about world hunger, poverty, and war .

    If only they could sort out the problems on this planet before eyeing others.

    But, yeah, it blows me away too... :)

    Merry Christmas Quinn.

    1. I know what you mean, Dani. Even when a new medical or other discovery is announced "thanks to the space program" I think, "What, you couldn't have made this same discovery without the intermediate step of an entire space program?" But I suppose the point it, the research DID happen, and the discovery has now been made.
      Personally, I am not an astro-geek; the only NASA stuff I follow is the ISS, and that is in large part because the "I" = International. It does give me real hope to see such a complex program being run successfully as a joint endeavor between many countries. And when there is a "first astronaut from country x,y, or z" to become an ISS mission member or walk in space, I think it is especially wonderful.
      Yep, Pollyanna of the Galaxy, that's me! :)

  2. I guess I haven't been keeping up with the news this week. Last I heard was that they might have to do a space walk. I didn't hear that they actually were. I hope everything works out ok for all of them.

    1. I saw only bits - well, about three hours worth - but I did see the beginning and the end, and they were about a half-hour ahead of schedule. The second walk is scheduled for Monday, I think, and depending on how that goes, there may be a third. :)

    2. Follow-up: NASA just rescheduled the 2nd walk to Tuesday morning.

  3. Mercy, dear Lord, please keep them safe! Quinn, when I first saw your photo, I thought you were knee deep in snow. Yep, my eyes really are that bad.
    Thanks for posting about this; I'm way out of the loop and missed it.

    1. Well, up until today, I WAS knee-deep in snow! A lot of it melted down today, but there's still enough to go on with. ;)

  4. I don't watch or read news. Perhaps I should. I only hear tidbits on the radio when in the car. We cancelled our satellite subscription awhile back as none of us were watching tv and we were wasting about $75 a month for nothing. Now the tv just sits here because hubby can't seem to let go of it even though we don't even turn it on.

    As for the wooden bowl at the Indian restaurant -- it is tradition at the end of an Indian meal to be given fennel seeds and rock sugar instead of a peppermint as you would get in other restaurants. Quite tasty, though sometimes the seeds can be a bit chewy and hard to swallow if you take too many at one time. :)

    Happy holidays and warm wishes, Tammy

    1. Tammy, I haven't had a tv for about 15 years now, and have never missed it for a minute. In fact, I recently complained to staff at a hospital with televisions in waiting rooms, because in my opinion, when a person must be in a hospital waiting room, they are already under stress, and being forced to watch angry people shouting at each other on a big screen is NOT helpful.
      Now that NetFlix and YouTube and the like are available, though - and no commercials! - I've enjoyed many hours of movies and tv programs on my laptop. Favorites have been Foyle's War, Miss Marple, Last Tango in Halifax, QI. Hmmm, just noticed these are all British; don't think I've watched any US tv!
      Ooh, rock sugar! One Indian restaurant here has a bowl of fennel seeds by the cash register, but I've never seen the rock sugar. Yum :)


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