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7/10/96 - T+9
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6/28/96 - T-2
6/29/96 - T-1
6/30/96 - T-1 (Holding)
7/1/96 - Blast Off
7/2/96 - T+1
7/3/96 - T+2
7/4/96 - T+3
7/5/96 - T+4
7/6/96 - T+5
7/6/96 - T+6
7/8/96 - T+7
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7/10/96 - T+9
7/11/96 - T+10
7/12/96 - T+11
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7/14/96 - T+13
7/15/96 - T+14
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7/18/96 - T+17
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7/21/96 - T+20
7/24/96 - T+23

7/10/96 - T+9 - Down Under

The day begin bright and early here in the Shenandoah Valley. If you've never been here before, it is incredible. Nested in the Blue Ridge Mountains, this valley is surrounded by hills about 2,500 feet tall. Because of their lower altitude, the are fully covered with trees. The background view that you see in this picture can be seen by looking in any direction. They are all around you.

The first stop of the day is the Caverns at Luray. These underground caverns were created thousands of years ago by the erosion of the limestone deposits. Years and years of weathering have created an impressive display of stalactites, stalagmites, columns, curtains, and the like. The views are truly awesome. The photo here probably does not do the site justice.

One of the oddities contained here is a 'pipe" organ. I use the term pipe very loosely because the pipes are actually stalactites that have been specially chosen for the musical note that they product when struck by a hammer. They say that this is the worlds largest all natural organ.

From Luray, it was a scenic trip down they valley to Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson is remembered for not only writing our Declaration of Independence and being a President, but also for being a man of science. Monticello is a living reminder of all that Jefferson stood for and loved. If you are ever in this area, you must see it.

From Monticello it was back on the road. I have started watching what I'm calling the Bail Out Factor. This is the drop dead date on which I must stop all playing around and drive straight to California in order to report back to work on August 1. Having been on the road for 10 days, I was still holding a BOF of 6 days. The analytical side of me wasn't liking this, so I decided to put some miles behind me. I was planning on spending some time in West Virginia and Western Pennsylvania, but I decided to blow right on by these two. So 400 miles later, I'm holed up in Grayson Kentucky for the night. Well for what's left of the night. It's 4:00 right now and I need to get some sleep. I stopped driving because night blindness was setting in. A sure sign that I need some rest.

Have a great day and I'll be back tomorrow night.



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Last modified: September 28, 2002