Saturday, November 10, 2012

FAM Trip!

The other morning, my coworker and I stood shivering in the pre-dawn, ready to board a tour bus for the "Old Pueblo."    Now, I've never claimed to have even a passing interest in science ... but this Tucson excursion was, after all, COMPLIMENTARY.   

In spite of my lack of (sufficient) caffeine -- and those who I quickly deduced weren't "morning people" -- our cheery driver soon won everyone over.    Don't you love a fella who makes unscheduled pit stops without being asked - lol!   

Oh, but I would have liked to stop at Picacho Peak  -- one of the prettiest vistas along the I-10 corridor.     

(Stock photo)
Picacho Peak marks the western-most battle of the American Civil War (April 15, 1862).

...Another day, perhaps.

Having registered downtown, we boarded another bus to the Oro Valley and Biosphere 2.

This controversial (and costly) project was "the last serious attempt to lock people away in a sealed environment to simulate the claustrophobic conditions of a space base on a distant planet."

"Planet in a Bottle"

The mission began in September 1991 and finished two years and 20 minutes later.

4 men and 4 women lived among replica ecosystems: a cloud forest, savanna grassland, a desert, ocean, and marshes.   Each day's diet was comprised of bananas, sweet potatoes, beets, and rice.   (My inner carnivore wept!)

Yikes ... I don't think so!!!

While our guide informed us the Biospherians had made a pact, "What happened there, stayed there" ... others disagree:  "Before the first closure mission was half over, the group had split into two factions and people who had been intimate friends later became enemies, barely on speaking terms."

Later our conversation included this poser: "Would you do it?"  
Even were I so inclined, I don't believe I could wrap my mind around the idea of being IMPRISONED ... limited to any physical contact with the "outside" world.

Come day's end, I was startled when our driver excited the freeway ... in middle of NO-WHERE.
Ah-ha!  The Marana airport graveyard!
But straight ahead ... an imposing gate's signage read, "Authorized Personnel Only."

Not to be deterred, our driver veered left and around the side of a neighboring farmhouse.   Feeling mischievous, are we?

Covered head-to-toe in dust, tasting the dust ...  
We were still delighted to traipse up and down the flight-line...
Feeling almost truant!  


All in all, a fun time.  I have to admit, it felt good to step outside my ordinary.

Are you, perhaps, interested in visiting Biosphere 2?   
I've TWO tickets with YOUR name on it ...  first-come, first-served! :)

Have a great week, everyone!


  1. I'm not sure I could get beyond the coffee issue. Thanks for your thoughts on my post. I think in a year I will be glad I was able to be helpful and also will be launched on "the next phase."

  2. I like your thoughts here today. I am not one to take orders and be confined so Biosphere would not have been my cup of tea! But I do remember it well. You had quite an interesting adventure! Have a beautiful Sunday!

  3. I don't think I could have done this. I think I would have gone stir crazy with that diet and the lack of 3-4 cups of coffee a day, but what an interesting place to visit! Thanks for sharing it with us!


  4. I thought the Biosphere was interesting too, but I don't think I'd be a good candidate for it. Yes, you sure did step out of your ordinary! Have a good week!

  5. Very interesting thought. I don't think I'd want to live there but could I if I had to, yes.

  6. Oh my goodness what a fun and exciting adventure!

  7. Wow! That WAS different! That would definitely be stepping out of MY ordinary, too!! :)

  8. HI!!!
    I have been to both places.....the plane boneyard is what I call it....and of course the bio-sphere.....NO WAY would I shut myself in anywhere......I would be the first one killed!!!

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