Hello all.  I do apologize for my absence. I was in Florida for a week for the space shuttle launch. It got delayed three times, so basically I had a paid weeks’ vacation with a bunch of beloved professional colleagues and came home with a serious tan. I rode a kid’s surfboard for a while one morning, I brushed the sand off the shell of  a big huge burrowing turtle, and I saw an eagle’s nest up in the trees that was the size of a king-sized mattress.

Watching a shuttle go up three miles from the launch pad is astonishing. Far, far different than how it seems on TV. It is so blindingly bright, and the sound is initially a deep rumble, and then it crackles, like a giant firecracker. The spectacle takes up the entire sky. It’s moving and frightening at the same time; I was overwhelmed with both wonderment and fear.

When the rockets first ignite, the shuttle hesitates for a bit, sort of hovering for awhile, and you’re terrified it’s going to fall right over. And then it just shoots off into the sky, straight up like a bullet, but it looks like it suddenly changes direction, and the plume is reminiscent of the Challenger explosion so it’s momentarily terrifying. It’s really an amazing thing to see, and if any of you can get a chance to go to the Kennedy Space Center to watch one launch before they shut down the  program next year, I heartily recommend it.

In addition to sunning myself and surfing, I also pretty much ate my way up the Space Coast.

I don’t know if anyone has ever experienced the awesomeness that is a shrimp taco. Feast your eyes on these:


Grilled shrimp, tomato, avocado, lettuce, tomato and cheese. Oh my God. I ate them every day.

I also discovered a Florida ice cream company called Working Cow and had one of the best scoops of ice cream I’d ever had, with caramel swirls and little mini-rollos in a rich vanilla base. And then there was the grouper. And all the fresh fruit. And the mango mojitos. Oh dear.

In addition to the wonders of technology and seriously good eating, there were also a couple of men expressing appreciation of/interest in me, which was also surprisingly gratifying. The Kennedy Space Center is raining men, I tell you! Smart men with tans!!

And yet there are still four alligators to every employee there.

Anyway, I’m back, bitches, preparing to move house in two weeks but I promise to check in more often.