As I write this, I’m in a hotel room in Knoxville TN. We’re driving to Atlanta for the National FIRST Robotics competition. It’s a long drive and a long weekend once we get into the competition, so I insisted on taking it easy on the drive down.

I’m driving, pulling a trailer with all the parts, tools, pit supplies and other paraphernalia we need. Bobbi and I have three students with us and will be meeting some more of the drivers and pit crew there tomorrow.

Our job is to arrive early and get the robot uncrated on Wednesday. The rest of the team will arrive sometime Thursday by bus.

But tonight, our job is to get a good night’s sleep. We’re three hours away from Atlanta, so tomorrow will be a relaxed day too. Then the fun starts on Thursday. We’ll be working to get last-minute changes and improvements made to the robot, then getting through some practice matches to see how it does. Friday and Saturday are the real thing and will be non-stop, high-stress days. Wish us well.

We’re in the Newton Division. (There are so many teams here that they run four fields at once.) NASA TV will be showing it, if you get it. The internet feeds will be up for each field as well. Check the team web page if you want to watch.