Spirit Sol 494

Even though we're not getting the downlink until late -- so we could be starting at a decent hour -- I've had to come in early to support a 10:00 planning meeting. (For some reason, we have this pre-planning meeting at 10:00, even though the uplink process doesn't start until 13:00.) I arrive more than an hour early, because if you show up on Lab past 09:00 all the parking is gone. And I get everything nicely set up, and start some work of my own, and my damn machine reboots.

Turns out they're having some problem with the file servers and they've decided to try to fix it by rebooting all the clients. Without warning.

Well, it's not entirely true that they gave no warning. Apparently, they sent some people email (not me). So if you happened to be one of those people, and you happened to check your email at the right time -- you know, because everybody checks their email every five minutes, just in case the SAs are going to reboot the machines for some incomprehensible reason -- then you had some warning. I guess. The rest of us are supposed to just deal with it, apparently.

Perhaps my attitude is slipping. I need John Wright to come by and grin and say, "This is so cool."

So I get everything back into some semblance of decent shape before the meeting starts. Squyres, despite a badly stuffed-up nose, takes a few minutes to say, "We're shortly going to be facing a big decision on Spirit: how to continue exploring Husband Hill, in light of our recent discoveries here and our improved power situation." He's been mentioning the need for this discussion for a while now, planting the seed. I think this means: "I want to meander up the hillside more slowly than we had been planning to," which is really fine with me. As long as we go to the top.

The pre-planning meeting itself explores a number of options. Are we going to stay here and IDD? Do a long drive back uphill? Do a short drive and explore another part of the outcrop? It's the last choice that wins. We pick a spot at one edge of the outcrop, about 2m from our present position. They'd like to go farther away, but that's where the outcrop ends.

So we'll do one last bit of IDD work on the current chunk of outcrop, then drive on to set ourselves up to continue at another part. I have both sequences roughed out before the SOWG meeting ends, and Chris and I split them: he takes the IDD sequence, I take the drive.

It seems like a long time since I've been RP-1 for a meaningful drive in the Spirit World. It's a short one, but I'm still worried about it. Lots of places where things could go wrong, unknown terrain under our wheels, a long approach we're trying to nail in one sol ... heck, come to think of it, it's just like old times.

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