Saturday 25 August 2012

One small step....into the apres vie

I was quite a serious bump when on 20 July 1969 at 20:17:39 UTC Neil Armstrong commanded the Landing Module for Apollo 11 on the surface of the moon. With the famous words "The Eagle has landed".

There was an announcement that he and Buzz Aldrin would not be stepping outside the capsule for a number of hours so my father felt he could go to sleep. It was part of the official flight plan.  But Armstrong requested that the extra vehicular activity commence earlier so it would be in the evening Houston Time so at 2:56 UTC July 21, 1969 while my father was sleeping a footprint was made at the bottom of that ladder and the words.

"One small step for [a] man. One giant leap for mankind."

Entered into the whole world's consciences.

Tonight we learn that the first man to step unto the face of another body in our solar system has passed away just weeks after his 82nd birthday.

As a child of that time when space exploration was new and exciting I loved to learn all things about space. I of course later sat and watched the first space shuttle take off and landing. When I went to Florida I just had to include on my itinary a trip to the Kennedy Space Centre. As those who know me know I'm still a fan of science fiction as well as space fact and love nothing more than in the night sky to see the stars above and dream of where we might go next.

He truly too one small step for man, there is probably still a more gigantic leap for mankind that we have yet to take, but Armstrong along with that band of Gemini and Apollo Astronauts proved they had the right stuff to make us believe we could reach for the stars.

So long Neil, you will always be the first man on the moon.

Neil Armstrong 5 August 1930 - 25 August 2012

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