Busy, busy, busy!
The five of us spent the last two days flipping the world upside down. Okay, I’ll elaborate. Imagine this: your landlord comes knocking at your door and tells you that the gravity’s reversing and you have 32 hours of weightlessness to prepare the house. You have to nail all your furniture to the ceiling, secure loose items (pens, food packs, cords, medicine, clothes…), and inspect appliances that you couldn’t reach otherwise. That translates to two six hour spacewalks. On top of that, you still have to do all your daily stuff like tending the garden and testing the water quality. And if you’re me, you don’t even get to play around in zero-g very much because you’re strapped to a chair most of the day, orchestrating the whole operation.
We call it G-Day, and Tsering has a detailed log about it that you can read if you’d like to hear the technical side to the story. There’s no point in repeating it here. So instead, I’ll give you a fun little mystery.
At some point during our gravity-flip, a faded photo of a woman fell out of the wiring and landed on my chair. In the engine control room, of all places.
She looked about sixty. Though her short hair was dyed black, it did nothing to hide her wrinkles. She looked intense; her brow was furrowed down the middle and there was not a hint of crow’s feet around her eyes. But most of all, she looked familiar.
I sent a message to Hailey, a good friend of mine back at home. I told her what I had found, and that raw curiosity drove me to figure out who this woman was, but I couldn’t find any information in the on-board database. None of my crewmates had seen the picture before, either. So we’ll see!
- Fernanda Estrela, enginner, Odyssey III (public log)
Guess what I got. A letter from Hailey! Yes, I get letters from her often but this one’s special because this time, she was replying to one I sent way back asking about a mysterious photo (see Log 8-31-03-FE). Yes, it’s been a couple years and I never solved the mystery. Okay, I actually sort of forgot about it entirely. Can you blame me, though? A lot has happened between then and now.
Here we go…
Oh, by the way, I did some sleuthing for you and found out who the lady in the picture is. It wasn’t too difficult. She’s actually kind of famous. Have you heard of Kathleen Kearney? You probably have, but in case you haven’t, she’s the engineer who developed the Kearney-Rasmussen Drive that’s sitting right under your butt! But I’m sure you knew that already.
As you might recall, G-day had already passed, so the thruster was now hanging above my head. And yes, I was quite familiar with the work of Drs. Kearney and Rasmussen and their team. I was not satisfied just yet, however. I didn’t think I’d never seen a picture of either engineer, so why would this one look so familiar? And what in the world was a photo of her doing under the induction coil, anyway? Did one of the ship’s construction crew sneak it in? Luckily, Craig had an answer.
“It’s because we met her daughter, stupid. Don’t you remember?”
I have met a lot of daughters in my lifetime. Not very helpful, Craig.
Instead of pursuing the matter further with him, I turned to someone who would give me a more civilized answer.
“Tsering, who is Kathleen Kearney’s daughter and why should I know her?”
“Huh? Her daughter was Carellos from Ilion International. She trained us at Narrow Hills, remember?”
Oh! Okay, so that’s how a photo of Kearney wound up in our home. This wasn’t some Easter egg planted by a techie during renovation. It was just my predecessor keeping a picture of her dear old mother in her office.
And now that's got me thinking about mine…
- Fernanda Estrela, engineer, Odyseey III (public log)