While we were in Orlando for a family vacation, SpaceX and Axiom Space launched AX-2 from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral. We have always wanted to see a rocket launch. We drove the 90 minutes from our Airbnb home in Kissimmee to Jetty Park. One of the several viewing locations recommended online, this park was a good introduction to the whole procedure.
It was a superb field trip. We experienced something very few people have – the sights and sounds of sending humans into space. The sonic boom after the first stage of the rocket came back to land startled all of us, even though we were expecting it.
I could not believe how quiet the launch was. About 30 seconds later though, we heard tremendous rumble. The same happened with the return of the first stage. It came in quietly and, after 20 seconds, these super loud booms happened.
At some point, the Coast Guard was clearing the waterways in preparation for the rocket launch. An Axiom Space boat floated by, all the crew members wearing the same kind of overalls.
As we parked along the water, we got to talking with a nice Canadian couple who had been to several launches before, all scrubbed because of the weather. Until the last 30 seconds of the countdown, we really did not know if this mission was going to be scrubbed or not. Thankfully, the weather cooperated that day.
We also got to witness several cruise ships coming and going – huge! Last but not least, we learned what the white Ibis looks like and that pelicans can be black. The kids enjoyed watching all sorts of water birds fish but not as much as I did. I like watching big birds.