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Friday, February 4, 2011

Boy On The Moon

                                Full Moon Photo: Randy Kruger

The a young boy I was facinated by the Moon. This was the era of the Apollo Space Program and the manned space flights to the Moon. The triumph of course occurred July 20, 1969 when Neil Armstrong then Buzz Aldrin became the first human beings to walk the surface of the Moon. I wanted to be next...

It is hard to describe to this generation of school age children today just how stunning this first Moon walk was to all peoples of the earth at that time. It was truly unthinkable just a decade before that the United States or anyone could actually accomplish this amazing feat.

This was an era of radio and black and white TV. Movies at the Theatre were still king. Television was still in it's infancy, with only the 3 Networks on and they stopped all programming at midnight. Personal Computers still lay far off into the future (another decade before Apple II PC's came out).

I wanted to be an Astronaut. I wanted to fly to the moon and walk among the Stars. I thought about it constantly. That Summer of '69 I was nearly 7 years old. My Mum reminds me that I made Space Suits out of old clothes, and bags w/plastic face shields like space helmets those fellows used on their Moon walks.

I watched every single Moon launch as they were televised on TV for the most part. With each launch more and more Americans lost interest. There was a brief spike in attention when Apollo 13 had their accident and that crew was nearly lost in space.

By December of 1972 the Moon dream was over. At that time the last man left the moon and none has returned since. The Apollo program left an unfinished legacy and it seems doubtful at this time if we will ever see that gauntlet picked back up again and see man truly begin to EXPLORE space again.

Today's International Space Station is a wonderful achievement but it doesn't capture the attention and dreams of 7 year olds like going to the Moon did. Perhaps one day man will attempt to take that next step and blast of on another magnificent adventure....This time to Mars.


  1. I wanted to be an astronaut when I was in 6th grade. We were learning about the first American's in space and the moon landing, etc. I remember thinking to myself - there probably isn't any words to explain what it would feel like the second you get past Earth's atmosphere and all around you is infinite-ness (not a word I know...but hard to explain). Just you and forever in front of you...start everywhere. I miss having hopes and dreams so big.

  2. Wow Shelby, that was really well put and I agree: "I miss having hopes and dreams so big". It's so true that we grow up in this society and just living from day to day: Paying Bills, working, school, shopping, eating, housekeeping, all that stuff we HAVE to do just sucks all the energy right out of us and we become cogs in the machine. Roger Waters from Pink Floyd captured that so perfectly in The Wall, a fantastic album.
    Part of me feels that there is still time to become that DREAMER plus ACHEIVER again. The work w/addicts and blogging has pushed me right out of the typical box that we usually find ourselves in and I've grown I think as a human being because of it...Never give up, that's what I say...