It was 2010 and I had been asked to go on the space station Explorer. I had to think about this. Would my family go or would they stay on Earth. If I was going to go they had to go. I could not go with out them. This was the trip of a lifetime. This mission was to find life beyond our planet. The trip was a dangerous mission. We could die or we could live those were the only two choices we had. I ran home to talk to Barb about this offer.
To my surprise she had agreed to it. She said that it would be great for Parker and she would love to go were I had been. I was amazed, shocked and scared.
I would be doing scientific work. I would mainly be doing EVA's for the scientist on board. This was also scary and dangerous. You always had to think of the downside first and then the positive side. The down side is that the rope snaps. The positive side is that all goes according to plan. This was tough work. I knew though that I would love it.
We would leave in a week. We had so much to pack and so little time. I could not wait until we were up there. This would be are new home. I could tell that Barb was a little nervous but I told her that it was ok to be nervous. Parker wanted to bring everything in our old house but we were only allowed so much room on our plane.
The day had come and we were now ready to leave and go "home". This was scary for my family and I knew that. I told them that the worst would be over as soon as we had launched. She knew all the hazards of launches and I did to. I was afraid that Parker was going to get scared and change his mind. Amazingly he took it like a man and ran to our plane. He had only flown one other time and that was to go to the Irish Space Agency.
The launch went as scheduled but was a little bumpy. I was used to it and Barb was so scared. Parker was worried but kept on smiling anyway. We had finally made it through and we were now leveling out. We would reach Explorer tomorrow morning. We had time to sit there. I had a window seat and traded with Parker. He was so amazed and I showed him almost everything that I could. He was so amazed.
We arrived to the station and were ready to get off. They had cars for you and your luggage was put in a trailer that was attached to one of your cars. We got out and I looked up and was amazed. There was a whole new world now. A world that I helped to create and it was beautiful. It was breathtaking. There were businesses, movie theaters, schools, malls, and everything else you can imagine. This was wonderful. It was just the world that we were looking for. The crime was low, the pollution barely existed, and animals from all over the world. I knew that this was the world I wanted Parker to grow up in.
We started driving home and I had to take the long way. It just amazed me how well the place looked. I wondered if it would stay this way or if it would become our old world. When we got to the house we couldn't believe it. It was a two story house with a huge yard, amazing deck, and gorgeous. We got out of the cars and ran inside. It was even bigger inside. It was three rooms, two baths, huge kitchen, and a garage. We started to unpack and then go out to dinner.
We went out to the mall and ate in the food court. We then walked the mall and they had everything we had on Earth. I was beginning to like this place more and more. Barb wanted to go and look for a job. We went down by my office and I realized I didn't have a secretary so I hired Barb. Now we were working side by side. We had to get home and put Parker to bed.
We got home and started to unpack. I read the paper and it said that school started in a week. We had to go out and get Parker all the school supplies that he would need. I couldn't wait. I found another article and it said that we would depart in a week also. We had a list of emergency evacuations and plans incase of an emergency. I had to read over them. The one thing that caught me was that every company has a lifeboat that would hold there employees and their families incase of an emergency. This lifeboat would deploy once it was full. Barb and I decided to go to bed.
When we woke up I decided to go on down to the office and look over stuff. Barb was going to take Parker shopping. When I got there I met some people that I knew. I would be working around them. They had people from all over the world working up here. One person was Yurgi from my mission to Mars. He was going to be doing EVA's with me. This was exciting that I would be working with somebody that I knew. I found a note on my desk that had the days of practice and training. It all started today around four. They had to do practice while we were still so we could go outside. I also found my job description. It read that I would be working on satellites that we would drop out for communication. This was not what I was told I would be doing.
I had to leave to go to training. They got us all fitted for our EVA suits. They showed us how to get in and out of risky situations during an EVA. It was fun but hard. They told us that tomorrow we would be doing short EVA's. I could not wait. I had to leave to go home now.
I got home and Parker had a lot of school stuff and was showing it all off. He was so proud of what he had. He had also gotten some new toys. Barb had spoiled him a bit. She had also gotten me some books to read. They were all pretty good.
The next day at training we all got suited up for our EVA. This was so exciting and I could not wait. They had people out there holding on to you. They had to take precautions with all of us. Only one person panicked during his EVA. All the other EVA's went according to plan. The training was over for me and four other people including Yurgi. I asked Yurgi before he left he and his family wanted to have dinner with my family some time and he agreed. We decided to go out tonight. I called up Barb and she agreed to it also.
We met at Freddie's a sandwich shop. Yurgi's wife's name was Askar. They didn't have any kids but hoped for some. Barb and Parker were running a little late. Yurgi and Askar thought Parker was so cute. Parker just enjoyed the attention and played it for all it was worth. We ate dinner and then talked for a while. Askar didn't work and offered to watch Parker while Barb and I were at work. We gladly accepted. We had spent a while there and decided to leave.
We got home and we were dead tired. We decided to go on to bed. When we woke up we would drop Parker off at Askar's. Then I would take Barb to work with me so she could see what she would be doing. We were so tired but couldn't sleep. We spent all night talking with each other. We just had so much to say and we never knew it. She told me that she was scared being here and I told her one big secret about me. I was scared too. I had no idea what this trip would be like.
After we dropped off Parker we headed to work. It was already pretty busy. Luckily, there were other secretaries there that could show Barb what to do. She was all right so I left and I had to go look at the satellites. They were very complex machines. I was pretty sure that I knew what I would be doing. They showed us how to launch it, open it, and power it up. It would take about a day a piece to launch one satellite. We had to have patience. One person wasn't sure why we were dropping the satellites off. The manager told him so we could keep communication with Earth. This was the only way we could keep talking with them and be galaxies away.
The day just flew bye. It was time to go home and pick up Parker. We drove bye and Askar had just fixed him a snack. We let him stay and finish that and we talked to Yurgi and Askar. She claimed that Parker was a real good kid. I looked at her and just smiled. I knew he was a great kid. He could be a little devilish at times. He finished his snack and we decided to head home. Askar had bought him a new toy at the mall, and he just loved it.
The day had come that we would launch off. We all had to be at the schools to prepare for any emergency. They were sure nothing would happen but had to be careful. We all sat in the halls and waited. Suddenly we felt a sudden jolt. I knew that this was good. We had launched. We were flying through space and it was amazing. It took some people time to get use to walking and stuff while flying.
It has been a while and they have asked us to put out the first satellite. This would be an experience since this was the first one. I was ready to do it but I was a little nervous. They told us tomorrow we would stop and launch it. It was called Ex1 for Explorer 1. It would be dropped off right at Mars. They also stopped for one main reason. They had to prepare to go through the asteroid belt. They let me and Yurgi go home early and prepare for the EVA.
The next morning I woke up and prepared for work. I didn't eat much because you can't tend to keep it down during an EVA. I got to the bay doors and Yurgi was already there. He was getting suited up so I started also. They showed us exactly what to do and told us to do nothing else. They had launched the satellite earlier this morning. All we had to do was get it up and running. They prepared us and they left to go into the back room. They opened the bay doors and we swam out. It was amazing being out here. I had already done an EVA in front of Mars though when we had the fire on the Mars mission. The satellite was right out there and we got to work. They said that we were out there for about three hours, but now the hard part comes. We had to get the satellite up and running. We started and it worked! Ex1 was in business now. Finally, our day was over.
Later that day they came and told us that we would stay safe on the station going through the asteroid belt. I wondered what they meant and they said, "Don't worry about it." This was very odd and then I realized we were not safe or clear to go through the asteroid belt. I wondered why they were going to let us go through. They had to let this mission succeed and stopping here would not. They told us to have our families here at noon tomorrow. I agreed. I left to go home.
I got home and I told Barb. I told her to get the most needed things. She got some family pictures and a few clothes. We were ready to leave. This was scary we didn't know if we would be able to get to the office with luggage with out being noticed. We decided tonight we would take out the luggage and we would leave early tomorrow morning. We tried getting to sleep but it wasn't working. We were to scared so we decided to call Yurgi. He couldn't sleep either and we talked half the night. What were they doing and where were they going to put us? Then all of a sudden the alarm clock went off. We had talked all night and not known it. It was time to leave.
When we got there Yurgi had just pulled in. We walked inside with our luggage and headed straight for my bosses office with our luggage. When we walked in he told us to wait one minute. He went to a back door and opened it. There was an elevator behind it. He told us to get in. We did what he told us and we pushed the "SL" button. When the elevator opened there were probably fifty "Life Boats" They were smaller than we had expected. We were showed to one and told to get in. We asked if we were leaving now or waiting till we got through. He told us that we were waiting. We had to have sat there for an hour, and then he told us to prepare. All of a sudden screeching noise that lasted minutes and the alarms went off. They were calling out sectors that were damaged. We had to wait on another family to come. When they got there we buckled up and prepared for a hard ride. The boat started and then flew off. We were probably going to miss the asteroid belt leaving, or at least I hoped we would. We got out and luckily missed the belt. We sat there and waited on other boats to come. We listened in to the ship through the radio. They were just yelling out sectors destroyed. Emergency walls were dropping for protection, boats were launching to save lives, and people risking their lives to save another persons life. As we sat there only eight other boats came out before the end. There was too much pressure on it. Nobody could have done anything. After thirty minutes of pain and agony for people the station exploded. Debris was flying everywhere people were screaming and Barb was crying. I tried to comfort her but it didn't help. The ship captain told us we had to go now before there was another explosion. We turned our heads and left. We never looked back but felt another explosion that probably surged through out the entire galaxy.
After months of sitting in the boat we made it home. We passed Challenger and were cleared for landing. We headed in and had a perfect landing. The coordinator of Explorer was there and told us that only thirty people got out. There were over a thousand on the ship. That was the saddest day and we will never forget it. They looked into it to see why we went forth through the asteroid belt when we were not ready. We will never know but only feel sorry for the people that were on the station.
I still haven't quit NASA. I don't know why I stay but I do. This is something that Barb has talked about for years. She says that I should give up. I am not a lucky astronaut. I told her if I give up what am I teaching Parker. She had no comment. I stopped to talk to Yurgi and he said that Askar was pregnant. They were so excited.
My note: I am trying to keep using the same characters because I feel so involved with them. I know them and they know me. I plan on writing many more stories. The narrators name is Max. They are on a quest to find a new planet that could support life. The station they are on is extremely nice. They were surprised because they thought it would be all scientific but it wasn't. You can read my other story called My Mission to Mars. It could also help explain in some ways.