Anne McClaine from space

Talking to an astronaut, that's pretty cool. But talking to an astronaut while they're in space, that's a once in a lifetime experience for most.

More than one thousand students from schools around Eastern Washington gathered at Gonzaga Prep to for a video chat with astronaut Anne McClain.

McClain graduated from Gonzaga Preparatory School in 1997. She wore a Gonzaga Prep shirt underneath her space suit, which made the whole gym cheer.

McClain was selected in June 2013 as one of eight members for the 21st NASA astronaut class. In December of 2018, she launched to the International Space Station for Expedition 58/59.

Students in the crowd asked McClain what it feels like to be in zero-gravity, how she sleeps, and if things ever hit the International Space Station. McClain said in space, you don't know which way is right side up, or upside down, so she just does what feels right. She showed videos of her bedroom, which was just big enough to fit a sleeping bag and cubby, that was all tied down so nothing would float away. McClain said things do hit the Space Station, but usually only causes a small dent.

McClain's mother, Charlotte Lamp, said she's proud that her daughter followed her dreams, even though they took her far away from home, and she can't wait to see her, and hug her.

"It's exciting to hear them, and see them ask their questions. She told me on Sunday that she was really excited for this," Lamp said.

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