Planning and Packing

It’s been two weeks since I was notified of my selection for NASA’s STS-135 launch Tweetup. I’ve booked my flight, reserved a rental car, and found a place to stay. I’ve been slowly accumulating the things I’ll need for my trip, including toiletries and camera accessories.

Since I’m not an expert photographer, I’ve decided to leave my digital SLR at home. I don’t have a lens good enough to capture the shuttle from where we’ll be, and in all honesty, I want to enjoy the launch, not worry about getting a good picture or video. I’m going to bring my normal point-and-shoot camera, my high definition camcorder, and a travel-sized tripod. I’ll snap pictures throughout the day, then I’ll put the camcorder on the tripod for the launch. No, I won’t get really good video of the launch with my little camcorder, high definition or not, but it will allow me to record the cheers of my fellow Tweetup friends as the shuttle takes off. Plus, I can show my kids just how much of a difference there is between the sight of the shuttle launch and the sound of it.

For the insanely curious, here are the gadgets I plan to bring to the Tweetup:
Nikon Coolpix S630 (12MP digital camera)
JVC HD Everio (high definition digital camcorder)
Icom IC-T70A Dual Band Transceiver (amateur “ham” radio)
Apple iPad
Apple iPhone
With the exception of the iPad, all of these items are small enough to fit into my DSLR camera case, which will significantly lighten my carrying load on launch day. The tripod I plan to bring will fit into my knitting bag, which is where my iPad and power cords will be that day.

I am so incredibly excited about this event!

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