April 20, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Socially Distanced Vacation Destination

Today we have great news for anyone who is looking to get away from it all, and by “it all,” we mean literally everything—human beings, air, gravity…

“Gravity keeping you down? Come to our space hotel!”

Yes, it seems that a company called Orion Span is planning on building a hotel in orbit, 200 miles above the earth. This is a great getaway idea for people who have already been everywhere on earth that they want to go, or at least where there is not a crazy, unexpected amount of anti-Semitism, so they can go see if there’s any crazy, unexpected anti-Semitism in space.

Each trip will be 12 Earth days, which is just enough time to come home and forget how to walk. You get off the spaceship and collapse at the gate. And then you keep dropping things on the floor for a month because you forgot how gravity works.

The initial phase of the hotel, which is supposed to launch in 2021, will be 44 feet long and 14 feet in diameter, and will hold up to six whole passengers, two of whom will be professional astronaut guides.

“That’s Earth over there,” the guides will say, pointing. Then someone will snap a picture.

Until now, going to space was pretty much limited to professionals. But now you too can go to space, provided you go through training first. But the training is shorter—three months as opposed to several years—because they’re going to send two people up with you who know what all the buttons do. The rest of you can just float around bumping into things, so you just have to learn the basic things such as how to sneeze in space. And just in case you do, one of your guides is also a doctor.

You also probably learn things like how to keep your glasses on. And how to eat soup. And how to not breathe so much. But for comparison, most hotels require almost no training, although you do flounder around for the first five minutes trying to figure out how to turn on all the lamps.

Orion also keeps stressing that this hotel is “affordable.” The cost comes out to $9.5 million dollars a person, so that’s super affordable. There’s only room for four guests, though, so if you’re looking to spend more than $40 million dollars on this vacation, you’re out of luck.

The downside is that on your tuition assistance form, where it says, “Where have you gone for vacation lately and how much did you spend?” you might have to just write, “It was super affordable!” or something.

So this is definitely something we should all do. Imagine a 12-day vacation, carefree, except that you’re not allowed to leave your hotel room the entire time. Also, the hotel is moving. So I guess it’s more like being confined to your hotel room during tornado season, and your hotel is circling the Earth, and you have to figure out how to sleep as you fly around with your arms floating upward like you’re having a dream that you’re being mugged.

It’s also great for a small company team-building retreat if you want everyone to hate everyone else by the end.

“Yes,” you’re asking, “but what do you even do up there for 12 days, besides constantly put little soaps and shampoos into your luggage?”

Well, for one, you can look out the window. According to press materials, you get to experience a sunrise and a sunset every 90 minutes! So be prepared to spend the entire time davening.

“I’m going to be davening the whole time anyway,” you’re saying.

To break it down, though, that’s an hour for Shacharis and 15 minutes each for Mincha and Maariv. And if you say, “It doesn’t take me an hour to daven Shacharis,” bear in mind that you’re going to spend most of that time trying to keep your tallis on.

You would also be able to take part in some amazing space experiments, such as taking a shower, or “growing food, which you can take back to Earth as the ultimate souvenir.” You can see if plants grow the same way they do on earth, or if they grow downward. I don’t know. It’s all rainy-day activities. It’s like this vacation is for a very small niche—people who are bored by everything on earth, but want to get up to space so they can watch plants grow.

My guess is that there are other experiments too. I think they mention the plant thing because all the other space experiments these days involve mice and earthworms and squids and microbes, and seeing as you’re going to be in a tiny tube with these things for 12 days, that wouldn’t be a great advertisement for this hotel.

“I don’t know. Would you prefer we brought bigger animals?”

Yeah, maybe. Bring something like frogs, so we can watch them float around and be all confused. Or we can bring birds and hold them over the earth so that they look down and think, “Whoa, I flew way too high.” Or you can bring a cat up there and see if he lands on his feet, or if he lands at all, or what happens when you have a confused, terrified cat swirling around in an enclosed space with six people for 12 days.

That’s where the doctor would come in.

So come to think of it, $9 million is probably not a lot, especially once you realize that, for example, there’s a person who is both an astronaut and a doctor, and he’s taking 12 days off to babysit you on the off chance that you might get sick in a place where there are naturally no germs.

Wait. Maybe you’re the experiment.


Mordechai Schmutter is a freelance writer and a humor columnist for Hamodia and other magazines. He also has seven books out and does stand-up comedy. You can contact him at [email protected].

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