Space Shuttle Endeavor En Plein Air

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Keni Painting Space Shuttle Endeavor

People from the community and beyond filled the streets in South Central Los Angeles to see the final voyage of the Space Shuttle Endeavor. Everyone had their cameras ready as the shuttle crept up the hill on Crenshaw Place to make its cautious turn onto Crenshaw Blvd.

A wave of cheers and shouts of excitement rolled through the crowd as the 5-story tail-fin appeared first in the distance. Even as it moved at a meager speed of 2 mph, there were frequent stops, allowing the ground and aerial crews to check clearance for overhead electrical wires, trees or other obstacles that might possibly damage the space ship.

No Dissenting Voices

There had been an uproar prior to this day from people who protested the city cutting down hundreds of trees in order to make way for the shuttle. However, there appeared to be no dissenting voices at the site of one of the more historic and memorable events in Los Angeles. Note: The city agreed to replant many more trees than were removed.

An Educational Opportunity

It had been stated by the science community that it was their hope that this event would inspire the youth (presumably minority youth) to pursue studies that would prepare them for careers in the fields of science and space exploration. Judging from the wonder seen on the faces of young people here, that could very well happen if they can transfer their enthusiasm from the streets to the classroom. I’ve been a Trekie since Spock first grew pointed ears; I pray that our young people seize this opportunity of a life-time.

However, their enthusiasm must be matched by a suitable learning environment. Along with books and technology is the need for qualified and dedicated teachers. I had the pleasure of talking to Elaine, a second grade teacher. I can imagine that her students will go on to achieve great things in their lives if they capture her thirst for knowledge.

Space and Spiritual Matters

I also met two female musicians (bass and drums). I had a very interesting and thoughtful conversation with the drummer about spiritual things. I enjoyed their company.

I had pitched my easel to paint this scene en plein air near the front door of a resident. We had a good time of fellowship and prayed together before I moved on to the corner of Crenshaw Blvd. and Florence Ave. to do my next painting, where two people gave their lives to Jesus.

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