What was something that you saw or felt that you didn't expect the first time you went into orbit on the shuttle?
Kathryn Sullivan, director of Battelle Center at Ohio State, responds:
There were several very memorable points where the actual experience was beyond anything that our planning, practice and anticipation prepared me for. First was the sheer power of liftoff and what it felt like to be embedded in such a huge ball of energy. Next was an awareness that no acceleration I'd ever felt before lasted for as long as the boost to orbit lasts. The best of my surprises came right after main engine cutoff, when I finally looked away from the instrument panels and out the forward windows: I didn't expect my first glimpse of earth to literally take my breath away, but it did.