Now we're back over Ann Arbor, with Pioneer High School and the Big House to our left and all of southern Michigan down to Ohio spread out on our right. We bank again gently and descend slowly toward Willow Run. My fellow passengers have been moving around in the plane during the flight, and an older guy in great shape sits down across from me. I recognize his face from a display in Pioneer High School: he's Jack Lousma, former Space Shuttle Columbia commander and Skylab astronaut. And he looks as completely mind-blown as everybody else.
When we touch down and taxi back to the hangar, none of us wants to leave. We linger while the next group climbs aboard, then watch as the Yankee Lady takes off once again, climbing high into the sun.
[Originally published in August, 2012.]