How to get a Boarding Pass to Mars.

This is an article from The Verge………………

Now’s the time to get your name on NASA’s next mission to Mars

It’s that time of the year again, when NASA gives you the opportunity to “ship” your name to another celestial body. This time, the destination is Mars, and the shipping service is NASA’s future Mars 2020 rover, which will be headed to the Red Planet in — you guessed it — 2020.

The rover’s primary mission is to get us closer to answering that fundamental question: did Mars ever host alien life? The robot is equipped with tools and instruments that will help scientists figure out if the planet may have hosted life in the past. On top of that, the rover will also be drilling and collecting samples of Martian dirt. It’ll then leave those samples on the ground, where they could potentially be picked up someday by another spacecraft and brought back to Earth.

And while the Mars 2020 rover is doing all of this, your name could be along for the ride. If you send in your name sometime before September 30th, NASA engineers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory will etch it onto a silicon chip with an electron beam, and then the rover will carry it on its journey. The names are going to be pretty teeny, though — about one-thousandth the width of a human hair. That’s small enough so that more than a million names can be included on a single chip as big as a dime — but big enough for any Martian microbes to read (only kidding… Martians can’t read).

NASA has provided this opportunity for members of the public before, when it landed the InSight lander on Mars in 2018 or when it sent the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft to the asteroid Bennu. And just like any seasoned traveler, you’ll get a boarding pass and “frequent flyer” miles. Seeing as how the InSight travelers got about 300 million miles from their trip, the Mars 2020 folks are poised to get some serious points, too. Unfortunately, it seems doubtful Delta airlines will accept them.

Oxford

After going back to London made a quick trip to Oxford.It is a great day trip from London since it is only about a 1 hour journey from Marylebone train station.

When you arrive at Oxford there are many buses stopping at the train station.Since I needed to get back to london in a short time decided to take the tourist bus that covers the entire city in about 70-80 minutes.It costs 20USD but you can save about 10 percent by using a Viator promotion code that you can find online.

The bus makes about 20 stops and you can get off and return whenever you want.

I paid about 17 USD for a return ticket from London so it was not an expensive trip.

Here are some Pics

Stratford-upon-Avon

Took the Train from Marylebone Station in London which takes about 2 1/2 hours

It was not a pleasant trip since that day on May 6 had many delays on this route.Every time a Train was cancelled I got off at a new stop and then a new Train was cancelled.At that point I made many new friends who faced the same issues so it was not a totally negative experience.

When I finally arrived in Stratford-upon-Avon after making some good bets on where I should get off and which Train I hoped would actually arrive I was greeted by old style English hospitality.

The Taxi driver would not take a tip and even carried my bags into the Hotel to the Reception area which was not easy to find.

I chose the Arden Hotel since they recently joined Hyatt and as a result I could use Hyatt rewards to get 2 free nights.

The Hotel was old and very charming that charm of course comes at a cost no Elevator.

I was taken to a room with a short group of steps with the wonderful lady at reception taking my bags to my room.

It had a great view of the Avon river and the Royal Shakespeare Company right across the street.

In the Bathroom was a old tub that is larger then many rooms in London or New York City.

It was late afternoon so I quickly went to take a walk to get a feel for the area.I also had booked 2 shows at the RSC so I had very little time to take a quick view of the area.

All in all the 2 Days were great I got out of London got some fresh air visited a lovely and charming city with people who are lovely and charming.

This is not only a great day trip from London but a nice place to stop for a few days.

The RSC from my room.
Stratford-upon-Avon
You can feel the History.
Arden Hotel

The South of Italy

The best way to visit the beautiful areas of Amalfi and Sorrento and Capri and Portafino is using Naples as your base.

You can use the Circumvesuviana train system from the Central station which stops in Pompeii and Sorrento from Naples and it only costs 2-3 USD each way.The only problem is they have no AC so be prepared by bringing water with you.

From Sorrento you can catch a group of Buses that will take you to a variety of cities.They are new and have AC that really works.These Buses are cheap about 3 USD but they can be crowded.I took a Bus to Amalfi and Portafino.

You can also go to Capri with a Ferry and either come back to Naples or go on to another city like Portafino.

You can find prices online for the different options available. I would rather not give a specific Company since it would appear I was getting paid for the recommendation.

The Hotels in any of the cities along the coast tend to be much higher then Naples so if you want to keep your costs low having Naples as your base will help your money go a much longer way.

Portafino ……
bellissimo !!!!!!
Before Portafino


Which road is America taking ?

The initial theme of my Blog was to talk about travel and to have beautiful pictures so that people can enjoy the experience of traveling to parts of the world that perhaps they have never seen.

I decided to change the name of my Blog to Milky Way Traveler because we all are Travelers we all are on this Planet and we’re hurdling through the Milky Way galaxy and we’re basically going to parts unknown and we’re sharing it all together.

Watching the current news regarding Trump and the Immigration policy of the United States makes me want to acknowledge to everyone that we are at an important point now in our History.

This siren song of hate has happened very often not only in American history but across the Planet.There are now populist movements either it be in the Philippines under Duerte or in Hungary under Orban or in Brazil or in so many parts of the world where the Immigrant is looked at as the other as the enemy as creatures that are not human that should be looked down upon and hated.

Is this any different then previous eras like for example the 1930s which led to the de-humanization of Jewish people ? The Germans called them Communists the Russians called them Counter-Revolutionaries they were called parasites they were called dangerous they were called criminals and how did that work out ?

Now if you’re poor and you’re desperate and you’re escaping the horrors of Guatemala or El Salvador or Honduras or any other area in Central America or South America where people are dreaming of a better life,you are not looked at as creatures that deserve the empathy of Trump and his supporters. Now Trump and his enablers look at these people as not human but as simply creatures that are bringing disease that are bringing the worst that the world offers to the shores of the United States. While the Statue of Liberty cries in New York Harbor……… Trump is capable of doing anything to try to satisfy his political base.

Now is the time that we can’t simply be silent what will people ask in the future ? What will your children or your grandchildren say ? What did you do during this period ? How did you conduct your life when the de-humanization of human beings was being done by the President of the United States and those who enable him ?  We as decent human beings regardless of our political parties regardless of our religious beliefs cannot tolerate this type of behavior from the President of the United States and the present Administration, we now must do something.

That involves being politically active  being involved in Organizations that don’t accept this type of behavior that means we can not afford to do nothing.

History has proven that those who just sit back and watch end up being a party to those who helped create the environment of not only hatred but eventually people being killed.

Our country is also guilty for the Holocaust we didn’t allow people into our country because of fears and because Politicians and ordinary people said the Jews were Spies the Jews were dangerous that they should not be let into the United States.

And what was the result of that ? Even Ships that came with people who were desperate to leave the ancient hatreds of Europe were not allowed into the United States because of the same type of ugliness and hatred and prejudice that we are singing right now. The one difference is that FDR did not voice the same amount of ugliness and vitriol and hate as Donald Trump.But the results were that so many people could have been saved if the voices of fear had not dominated American discourse.That stain of blood is on America’s hands.

The question we have to ask ourselves is this ? How many people are now not being allowed into the United States who may be killed in their home Countries. Maybe their fears are justified ? Is it proper to treat these people with such a lack of sensitivity ?

History is looking at us now not only as a Country but as a people as to who we really are what are our morals ? What are our ethics ? Are we simply going to turn away while people are begging for help and assistance ? Are we going to allow the haters and the ugliness of Trump and those who support him to dictate our moral and ethical standards ?

We need to act now even before the 2020 Presidential election because there’s going to be a lot of pain and a lot of ugliness before November 2020 regardless of how the election concludes. I suggest that if you believe what Trump is doing now is totally counter to American values then you must act now because the legacy of America is now in your hands.

Santorini

Have been staying at the Atlantis Hotel in Santorini……… and Wow what a view.The view from my balcony is so beautiful it is difficult to have a desire to leave the room.

But this Island is a pleasure to explore and you can do it for very low cost.The central bus station on Fira has a group of buses that go all over the Island and they are new and have Air Conditioning.The rides are around 2USD to almost any part of the Island.

You also can take many long walks that can give you great views as well.

The Atlantis Hotel does not have an elevator so you have to reserve long in advance if you want a room on the first floor.

This property is a good value and since it is in Fira facing the Aegean it has fantastic views.

The rooms are basic but have a Fridge and Air Conditioning that actually works.

It costs about 20USD to take a Taxi from the Airport to the Hotel.


What a view !!!!!

The Lake District of Chile

After leaving Ushuaia our ship headed up the Coast of Chile to an area that is wild and unspoiled and often beautiful although it is often hidden by clouds and rain and high wind.

It is an area that gives you the feeling you have been transported to another Planet it carries a feeling of mystery of something alien.

The trip took 2-3 days before we reached Puerto Arenas we did not stay long since high winds did not allow for safe passage to the port so we continued to

Puerto Montt a very beautiful and unique area that is also very young geologically.It has had the most powerful earthquakes in recorded history some as high as 9.6 which occured in 1960 known as the Great Chilean earthquake.

Like New Zealand which also has a very active land area these areas have enormous beauty while they can be potentially dangerous.So that Ying and Yang adds to their appeal.These Pics will give you a feel for the place.