ESA are you ready for the event?” calls out Houston Mission control.
Waking up from her snooze, she went back to her reading corner to continue where she left off last night with her recording and video editing.
“Last week I started reading on HTML-CSS coding. The other day I just saw on TV how the Internet was developed. And today I am Watching Earth with the astronauts,” said Grandma Glasses.
She managed to make a short video Watching Earth_Live ISS Stream 13June2018
“ The space station is 20 years old, its first piece launched in 1998 and construction completed in 2011. Can you imagine a research laboratory as big as a football pitch in outer space? It took astronauts a total of 40 missions to put the space station together piece by piece. And it has been the home and scientific laboratory for astronauts and scientists ever since.” Grandma Glasses never fails to amuse me with her stories.
Astronauts are floating in space. But actually they are not floating, they are falling. Astronaut Tim Peake explains, “We do not fall to Earth because of our high speed, we fall ‘around’ Earth. We travel about 28 000 km/h (17 500 mph) but as we accelerate towards Earth under the pull of gravity, Earth curves away beneath us and we never get any closer. Since we have the same acceleration as the Space Station, we feel ‘weightless’.
The Cosmic Classroom as well as other documentary videos are great advancements in educating students. They have access to speak with astronauts in real time and learn about life onboard the space station. All the students around the world participating in the Cosmic Classroom, including Grandma Glasses, learned that the heart beats slower in outer space so they need to exercise to avoid the heart from shrinking. Also, astronauts don’t smell well with their nose and affects their ability to taste food. Food tastes a little bit more bland because body fluids tend to shift towards the chest and head, blocking their nose and affecting how astronauts smell and taste food.
Curiously, Grandma Glasses watches a video of American astronaut Steven Swanson to further understand and see how it is to live and work inside the space station.
In another documentary video, Grandma Glasses learned about astronauts’ food onboard the space station. They have different kinds of food from the US, Russia, Japanese and even occasional stock of their favorite foods their families send from Earth. They have ready-made food and some dehydrated food in packets that they rehydrate and heat up in the food warmer when it’s time for them to have breakfast or they feel for eating.
“ These kind of things we never get to see when we were in school back in the old days. We only read about them in books, and leave everything to our imagination to visualize how it is in outer space. It’s amazing how kids, even elder people like me, now have access to information to learn more about life onboard the space station,” recounted Grandma Glasses.
“ I remember when I was in grade school we were asked to write about how future life will be in 10 to 20 years. Imagine forty years ago, I wrote that cars will have wheels suspending above the road so you can avoid traffic. It was very animated and unbelievable back then. But now we have electric cars, levitation trains, and self-driving cars, ” she chuckled as she continues.
With a slightly high pitched voice, she sputtered her disbelief. ” I read about the Japanese Skydrive from Cartivator. It’s a flying car with a vertical takeoff and landing technology which do not need roads and runways to lift off. That’s the closest cousin of my young idea, and I was not even thinking about being a scientist.”
“That’s a real futuristic spinoff from Fred Flinstones’ footmobile, the Jetson’s flying car, Knight Rider’s KITT , the Batmobile, and James Bond’s cars.”
She lowered her head and turned to me. “Now it’s time to ask yourself. How do you think the future would be, ten to twenty years from now?”
I glanced at her from the corner of my eye. I tried not to move, trying to ignore her question. But she stared back at me, expecting an answer.
“Enough of advancing science. The loyal and obedient dog was out in space even before man took his first historical step on the moon,” wagging my tail, I hunkered down and sighed.
“And I’m glad laws have been provided to protect the rights of animals,” she gave me a gentle pat on my nose.
“And I cannot imagine myself enjoying gel capsules in my dinner bowl, more so being sent to float in outer space. I’m happy to be on the ground.” I wiggled my nose, trying to sniff history from the air.