I could not resist attending what was hailed as the last night-time launch of a Space Shuttle. Endeavour’s launch was scrubbed the first night due to cloud cover, but that worked to my advantage as I saw the launch from an even closer spot the following night. It was a cold night but a spectacular launch. The initial launch attempt was set for 4:39 a.m. on Feb. 7, 2010.
I drove straight down from Pensacola the day of the launch and got a riverfront parking spot along A1A in Titusville. Of course the launch was still nearly eight hours away, so I tried to nap for a while in the car. Let’s just say there is not a comfortable sleeping position in a Chrysler Sebring convertible for an adult male. I ended up walking for miles down A1A, going to McDonalds, the Rotary Riverfront Park and Docks and Kennedy Point Park. (One of those days, I hope to watch a launch of a rocket from Space View Park and go down the Astronaut Walk of Fame.)
Even though the odds of launching had been pegged at 70 percent earlier in the day, the clouds began to roll in during the last hour or two before launch. The mission got scrubbed for the night and the countdown set for the following night. (more…)