WE DID IT!!!
15 minutes to minutes and the end of simulation, James and I forged an artistic sign saying “WE DID IT!!!” to be the last webcam image of the F-XI LDM. We pointed one web camera out the window and another on the sign. We captured the images and shut the computers down. We made it four months, we did good science, and we are all good friends.
At the bottom of the stairs I shouted upwards hurrying the crew to get in the airlock for our pre-midnight countdown and bed of simulation. In the downstairs everyone was frantically trying to put their boots on and get ready to run out. “Let’s go! Let’s go!” I exclaimed. We all crammed into the airlock, for the first time all together ever, and were twitching with excitement… well others may have been twitching from the TVP aftermath of four months. Someone started the countdown, I’m not sure what the real time was but maybe my video that I took will tell us one day. 10-9-8-7 line? Oh yeah, 6-5-4-3-2-1!!!
STEPPING OUT INTO A FAMILIAR WORLD
The door popped open and a rush of fresh air greeted the crew. The sun had already set and the terrain had an unfamiliar pink and purple glow. We were all over the place like a kindergarten class on recess. Geologist were looking at rocks, biologists were putting samples into the fridge, and the rest of us just looked around, around, and around. Eventually we all came together in one spot and started chatting. We ended up spending more time chatting to each other than looking at the scenery. We are going to have serious attachment issues when we go home!
SPAM THE WORLD
After some group photos we made our back inside to spam the world. We wanted to let them know we were done and successful. I apologize to anyone who received my email more than 4 times, any less than that I’m not as sympathetic. I received some great replies already and I feel all tingly to be done. I feel more complete for sure. I also finished a draft of my paper last night before the countdown so that definitely helps.
Thank you again to everyone! More news is coming soon and we are preparing for a chat with the NASA Academy at Ames Research Center. Tomorrow we have a phone chat with Clay Anderson on the International Space Station!