Captain’s star log. Archer, T’Pol, and Tucker are celebrating T’Pol’s one-year anniversary serving on Enterprise. The previous record for a Vulcan serving on a human ship was ten days. Archer also asks a question he’s been meaning to pose since noticing something in her service record: at one point during her assignment on Earth, she visited Carbon Creek, Pennsylvania. T’Pol explains that it was the site of the first contact between humans and Vulcans, which she says happened, not in Bozeman in 2063, but in Carbon Creek in 1957.
She then tells the story of her great-grandmother, T’Mir, who was second-in-command on a survey vessel that was sent to observe Earth following the launch of Sputnik I. However, the ship had a malfunction, and was forced to crash-land. The captain is killed in the crash. They’re in a remote area in Pennsylvania, about six kilometers from a small mining town called Carbon Creek. While they transmitted a distress signal, they have no idea if it was actually sent, and if so, if it was received.
T’Mir and Stron would prefer to remain in hiding in the woods, but Mestral points out that they’ll starve to death before long. They go to Carbon Creek, steal some clothes, using hats and recombing of hair to hide their ears. Upon realizing they will need local currency to purchase food, Mestral hits on the idea of hustling pool—it’s only geometry, after all—and he makes enough to get them some TV dinners. Before too long, the three of them are renting a house. T’Mir is working at the bar where Mestral hustled pool, cleaning up the place. Stron is working as a handyman (using Vulcan tech for some of his repairs, making him very much in demand), while Mestral gets a job in the mines.