Lipi Roy, Crew 288 Journalist
One last look at the exquisite Utah landscape, one last day of work, one last dinner together. As we return to Earth on our last day of mission, we reflect on the deeply enriching experience each one of us had…
Our final day began with another round of spam fried rice – driven by Crew demand (and the need to finish leftovers) and supplied by Hunter (Crew Geologist/ on-demand chef). Fueled by this ‘meal of the mission’, Jesus (Crew Engineer) and Hunter proceeded to go all the way to Grand Junction to rent a car (our spacecraft back to Earth) while the rest of the crew stayed back and cleaned the Hab. The successful end to the mission was celebrated with a dinner at Burger Shak (where Hunter undid his spam-fried-rice respect by not living up to the expectation of finishing leftover fries).
It feels like it was just yesterday we stepped into the Hab, excited for our first EVA. Hidden behind the shared EVAs, board games, dinners, and laughs, was a tapestry of diverse experiences, tapping into a shared purpose, and fostering a deep sense of camaraderie. As much as seeing our families and friends for the holidays (and getting human showers everyday) is enticing, I am positive we will all miss the usual sight of Baby Yoda, the Christmas-tree-card unfolding ritual during every dinner and sharing a good meal after wonderful EVAs.
With that, I officially sign off as crew journalist of crew 288. Until next time!
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!