Freddy Khan - March 19, 2002: Inside Nasa - Log for 1 Feb:
Mark’s training is currently in progress, so we meet whenever his schedule allows for it. Went out for Middle Eastern food one night, and the poor guy almost fell asleep in his plate of dolmades and kebabs. Guess his training is pretty rigorous. Karen, is he supposed to eat this kinda food?
The biggest issue this week was the co-ordination of press activities. I fielded tons of calls from every news and TV agency imaginable wanting to interview Mark. We managed to fit in quite a few of these into his schedule. The press finale was a conference held on Friday, where the NASA public affairs office invited the major TV and Media companies to interview the entire crew.
Spent an awesome four days traipsing around the NASA offices. This is an opportunity I was extremely lucky to be afforded, as security is extremely hectic. Most people actually conduct their meetings outside of NASA at building 110, which is the security office, with facilities for meetings and conferences.
NASA has been tremendous, and the education department with Debbie and team delved deep into the cupboards to provide me with pertinent educational content to bring back for the educational initiatives. The hospitality of the people knows no bounds, and “no” is a word that is pretty unfamiliar to this crowd. These people are uniform in their commitment to their respective vocations, and most people I met actually love what they do, and are more than eager to assist in any way they can.
The week ended in my attendance of the Education conference. Here I had the opportunity to meet and greet with educators from as far afield as Alaska and Rhodes Island. Contrary to the stereotype, we hardly sat on the porch and whittled while chewing our jerky and tobacco, but had an amazing time discussing our respective problems relating to education, infrastructure, space, kids and life in general.