Monday, October 15, 2012

Hey, Endeavour! Say, Cheese!

It was amazing.
I've seen the shuttle up close before, so this whole thing about the shuttle being delivered to Los Angeles hadn't exactly gotten me really pumped up.
But, dang!  (You know I didn't say, dang, right?)
My first sight of the shuttle as it came around the bend on Manchester near La Cienenga was absolutely one of the most awesome sights.
I had Reporter Dave Lopez with me and we were in the middle of our 5:00pm live shot.  Our camera position was right by our news van.
Officers from the Inglewood Police Department had been telling the news media all day how we were going to be locked down and wouldn't be allowed to step foot off the private property where our vans were parked.
Okay, as soon as we saw how little concern the cops were having about what the media was doing, we absolutely started pulling out more cable.
It took some effort, but we finally made it to where the police line was set up to hold back the general public. We frantically managed to get our cables re-connected.
Shortly after we were set, the station took my shot live and Dave described what we were both seeing as the Endeavour's wing passed not just by, but directly over our heads.
For some reason (and I can't explain it), that was pretty freaking mind blowing.
I panned the camera up and the sky was blocked out by the black and grey tiles on the underside of the shuttle's wing.
The shuttle came to a halt near our (Spider Pod) camera platform.  Endeavour would sit there for the next six hours.
We stayed on the air through the 5pm and 6pm newscasts.  After that, Dave Lopez handed off to night side reporter Juan Fernandez.
I had a few short breaks through the rest of the evening, but my camera stayed connected and powered up, so I couldn't stray far.
Did I say, wow?
I'm not sure how many pictures of the shuttle I'll ever need, but I can say with some confidence, I'm good on shuttle pictures for a while.
Later in the evening I finally got a chance to walk away from the live truck and just take in all the activity surrounding the Endeavour.

Toyota (a major sponsor of the Shuttle's installation at the California Science Center) was on hand to film the entire journey.  Some adjustments needed to be made in order for the shuttle to cross the 405 Freeway and that took up the bulk of the shuttle's layover.
Toyota wanted to get some very particular shots of the shuttle towed across the bridge that crosses the 405 at Manchester.
They used a Toyota Tundra to tow the shuttle across.
Go figure.

We went on live during the 10pm and 11pm news, but never really knew when the shuttle would start rolling again.  Everything seemed to be set, but the anticipation was driving everyone crazy.
After one short test, the shuttle began to move.
The crowds, media and civilians all went wild.

Once the shuttle crossed the bridge, another one of our crews had the better shot of it.  Suraya Fadel was the reporter and I could hear the excitement in her voice as it rolled to a stop right in front of her live shot position.

I imagine that was how it went for everyone on the assignment that day and on through the weekend.

The excitement of seeing the shuttle, then the slight sadness as it moved on and you could hear the excitement of the next crew experiencing what you went through a few hours earlier.

Still, no matter how you felt about it, history was made and I smile a little.

I think everyone there got a picture.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I saw that shot of the wing passing directly over your camera...great work!