English Subtitles for A Selfie On The Edge Of Space

Subtitles / Closed Captions - English


[MUSIC PLAYING] NARRATOR: Selfies-- we're obsessed with them. I thought I'd seen them all, until I came across this one-- the orange jumpsuit, the space helmet, and the rocket-like capsule.

But how exactly did this guy manage to take a photo of himself on the edge of space? His selfie game is on another level. [MUSIC PLAYING] Imagine looking out the window and seeing this view. That's what this man was lucky enough to witness.

CHRISTOPHER MICHEL: Hi, my name is Christopher Michel. I'm from San Francisco, Californian, and I'm a photographer. This photo was taken by me above northern California in the backseat of U-2 spy plane with a GoPro camera. NARRATOR: U-2 spy planes have been in service

since the 1950s, which is a testament to the aircraft's designer, Kelly Johnson. Christopher got his opportunity to fly one while reporting for the US Naval Institute on Johnson and the aircraft he designed. Christopher's pilot that day was Lieutenant Colonel Joe

Santucci. Before takeoff, both men went through lengthy medical exams and had their suits pressure tested to ensure that their core temperatures didn't rise too quickly. Christopher was nervous about the flight,

but he didn't realize how unique the scene was going to be until he took off. [MUSIC PLAYING AND SOUND OF PLANE TAKING OFF] CHRISTOPHER MICHEL: It was really one of the very best experiences of my life-- unusual to the extent that I'm wearing

a spacesuit, unusual to the extent that the airplane was followed by [? Camaro ?] on the runway giving commands to the pilot, unusual to the extent that half the landing gear drops away at takeoff to save weight. I never felt sick. I only felt wonder as the airplane lifted nose-up,

and we went straight up to 70,000 feet. NARRATOR: At that altitude, temperatures can drop to 70 below [? zero. ?] Christopher noticed that the glass in the cockpit was starting to freeze over. But luckily, the ice didn't block the view.

CHRISTOPHER MICHEL: A highlight of the flight for me was when Joe Santucci suggested that we turn off air traffic control-- or at least turn it down-- and it got very quiet in the aircraft. [MUSIC PLAYING] Really, in the spacesuit, it was definitely quiet.

And I could look up to the blackness of sky and down to the blue, curved Earth below and really have a moment of wonder and awe. NARRATOR: All too soon, it was time to come back down to Earth, which with a U-2 spy plane is a bit of a daunting prospect.

It takes a skilled pilot like Santucci to land the U-2, which has to stall over the runway before it touches down. CHRISTOPHER MICHEL: The Air Force, like the pros that they are, met us with champagne to congratulate having reached that altitude.

But I realized that one of the best moments of my entire life had just come to an end. It probably was my astronaut moment, although I wasn't an astronaut. And it's probably going to be as close as I'll ever get.

NARRATOR: This series is all about sharing compelling photos and the stories behind them. Catch more of "This Happened Here" on "Seeker Stories" every week, and thanks for watching. [MUSIC PLAYING]

Video Description

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What's it like to fly on a U2 spy plane, 70,000 feet in the air, at an altitude that reaches 70 degrees below zero? Watch one man capture his once-in-a-lifetime flight at the edge of space.

This weekly storytelling series uses the imagery of photographers and adventurers around the world to give us a deeper connection to and understanding of the human condition.

More Of Christopher Michel's Photos - http://www.christophermichel.com

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