Return of the PoSSUM – Day 3

Something I neglected to mention today was I did NOT wake up at 6 AM on day 2 to go work out with Anthony. I ended up having an alarm clock malfunction and I felt horrible. BUT today I did get up early to go work out. I can't believe how out of shape I am since my foot surgery. I just never... got back into shape after I could walk again.


So today we drove an hour and a half to go to SAMI for hypoxia training. I could talk about this for a while but I need sleep. The run down is they put us in groups of three inside a pressurized chamber. We had a flight simulator (to keep our minds occupied and to have a visual representation of our motor skills) and a mask on the side. They depressurized the cabin and we had a lack of oxygen in our brains. This is a threat for high altitude pilots and astronauts. Everyone has different symptoms so this was to learn not only what our own were, but what our crew mates do so we can watch out for them. Robert spoke very slowly, Catherine was doing great until she suddenly ran the plane into the ground, Nadia got super laser focused on the mission while Aidyl got super distracted.


As for me? I thought I did a decent job... my nose got a little cold, then I felt heavy, but still felt good. When I watched the playback (they recorded us) it looked like I was falling asleep at the "wheel", my eyelids drooped and I blinked very slowly, and I had a slowed reaction time and over corrected. It was absolutely terrifying how quickly I went down and how bad it was all while I thought I was killing it. Huge lesson for me!


We then got some space suit training for tomorrow. These are actually just terrestrial suits but they are for testing and are pressurized. I'll explain more and better later. We also (after dinner) did a lot of math work on our flight for tomorrow. One of us is a navigator or "co-pilot" and one is a cameraman or "scientist". We have to be the ones to tell the pilot where we want to fly tomorrow to get good pictures of a lake with the sun in very specific angles. INSANE. I know. It took a lot but Robert, my partner, is super smart and I feel like I was a fairly good assistant.


People to talk about today... Aidyl. She is so cute and intense all at once. She is Puerto Rican but from New York and her stories are incredible. And she is a great story teller. I also talked to Candice (Candi?) a bit and she seems like she has the best "don't tell me what I can't do" attitude of the group. We also have Vittorio, an incredibly intelligent Italian (like that alteration?) and seems to have a great attitude and mindset for reaching his goals. Finally, we briefly met Sofia, a high schooler who just came in for the Academy PoSSUM.


I also tried to go live. It got a little crazy because some of us went downstairs to work and when we got to a stopping point, we decided to break but then everyone else came down and started working. It was just a little loud and distracting. Plus it is hard to do a live with so many people. I think I got a few people interested in social media and its importance today though. I hope they all realize I look up to them all so they can totally do the social media thing if they want.


After we all did our crazy math stuff, most people went to bed. Robert, Anthony and I stayed up and had a nerd session. We talked a bit about space but the majority of our conversation revolved around social issues and deep thinking. It was amazing. A great bonding time to feel heard and vulnerable. It feels really cool to have found my tribe. I am not crazy for being me. Such a freeing feeling.


We are also slowly giving nicknames to everyone. Rodrigo is Shorty and that is irony my friends. Overall, I feel at home. Not expecting to feel like that so soon. I got this.

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