And here I am.
I can't believe that just over 12 hours ago I was waving goodbye to most of my family in Hurricane. Now, me and my enigmatic package are here at the Opportunity Bay Residence, along with my father, Granny Vida and Uncle Zoo, who have come along to see the launch in person.
Most of you will have at least seen photographs of the Andrew E. Curring Spaceport, if you haven't visited it as a tourist or perhaps as a passenger, but if you haven't been here in person, you will not really know what it's truly like.
Out here on the flatlands, the sky is huge- at the moment a deep evening blue that the bay is reflecting in a darker shade. The buildings match the sky- they are bigger than normal buildings; giant hangers for cargo ships, great big service buildings, huge warehouses for the storage goods. Beside them the Residence looks puny. At twighlight, when the buildings are silhouettes, the effect is stunning, almost like a precursor to the bigness of space itself.
I've not been over to the launch faculty yet, but we can see buildings in the distance, and then the launch pad. I head over there tomorrow, as my launch is on Wednesday. I've been watching the other people in the Residence curiously, as some of them must be fellow passengers, but I've not spoken with them. I guess I'm more concerned with having last face-to-face conversations with Granny Vida and Dad than making new aquaintences quite yet. I expect they feel the same: they've been watch me and my peculiar package that I have to carry everywhere. Uncle Zoo has already dubbed it "The Package."
To go with "The Package", I have a folder of papers and a pinhead with digital versions of the same which is now safely plugged into my computer where I won't lose it. These contain my pass papers- leaving Mars, arrival on Earth- healthcheck from my doctor verified by PCS' physician, copy of the confidentiality agreement I signed, copy of the contract and finally and most enigmatically, a closed paper corresponding to a closed file in the pinhead, "to be opened upon arrival on Earth." It contains my instructions for delivery.
"How mysterious," said Granny Vida, voicing everyone's thoughts when I showed them the closed file. I find it enigmatic but the reasoning is based in PCS's services: they provide "personal" meaning wholly private and safe, document and package delivery. The recipient of the package is part of the privacy, as is the sender.
Anyway, Dad just popped his head around the door and asked if I wanted to go for a walk towards the bay. I do. It's all dark now, the stars are probably out, and what better way to see Opportunity Bay than in the dark with all of space looming above, instead of being refracted away by the sunlight.
Gotta put on my identity card. My father's wearing his. It says the dates we're staying, "Residence - Company" and then his name. He's in my Company, haha. He's calling again, have to go...
Your "Residence - Passenger",
And here I am.