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My Hypothetical Journey To Space

Updated on January 8, 2011

What would keep you from taking NASA (or any space program) up on their offer?

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One Can Dream

To venture into space we must be strong-willed and determined. We must be fully committed to its exploration and discovery; space permits no half measures and is unforgiving of mistakes.

-Henry Joy McCracken-

At some point, every child dreams about being an astronaut. They look up into the sky at night and wonder what it would be like to touch one of those things that keep winking at them. In school, they learn about other planets and are filled with both fear and excitement. For me, it took being told by my oldest brother about the 1986 Challenger disaster to make me decide to leave space exploration to braver souls.

Yet, given the chance to go to space, I would go. Once you realize that people who live a simple, harmless existence are just as susceptible to death as less cautious people, you begin to wonder why you hesitated in the first place. Yes, space travel is still a gamble, but so is crossing the street after dark. I wouldn’t become a professional astronaut, but I’d fill in on one mission were I needed.

I imagine walking to the shuttle, weighed down by my gear, the theme from Armageddon playing on a loop in my head. As I’m about to enter the shuttle, I’d salute the people who are staying behind. (I don’t know if this is even done, but I feel like it’s something my five year old self would demand I do.) I’d get into my special seat and, with butterflies going wild in my stomach, I’d try to calm myself down. At this point, I imagine a far more experienced crew member would smile at me and I’d respectfully nod at them, non-verbally declaring how much of a privilege and an honor it is for me to be on board. The door would close and the count down would begin. I’d say a prayer and try not to think about the people I was leaving behind. As trained to do, I would do my tasks, making sure my role in the mission was done properly.

When we’d get to our destination, I’d look out at the landscape and try to find similarities to Earth. I’d be overwhelmed with emotion, trying to take in all that my eyes could handle. I would wonder if this was the way Earthlooked billions of years ago before we made it ours and did with it what we did. Realizing that war, violence, bigotry and hatred didn’t exist here, I would find it hard to return back home. When you see a planet that is so untouched and full of possibilities, you don’t miss luxury.

On second thought, perhaps, given the chance, I shouldn’t fly into space. After seeing all that I imagine I’ll see, I can’t imagine going back to Earth. Knowing that such a planet existed above me, I would never be able to enjoy the good things our planet has to offer.


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    • LowellWriter profile image

      L.A. Walsh 8 years ago from Lowell, MA

      Thank you, C and Birte for your comments. :o)

    • C.Ferreira profile image

      C.Ferreira 8 years ago from Rutland, VT

      Don't be so quick to count out space exploration...well at least a quick flight into space, for people like you and I Birte. They already have a small plane-like shuttle that has successfully flown into space 7 times in 7 days! Perhaps in the not so distant future, commercial space flights will be offered at an affordable price!

      And of course, by affordable, I mean the cost of a family vacation to Disney or a week long cruise!

      Thanks for answering my request Lowell. Very nice.

    • BirteEdwards profile image

      BirteEdwards 8 years ago

      When I came to hub I had no idea what to expect. I surely did not expect to travel into space.

      You have revived an old dream (from childhood) that I know will never come true, but so what ... We are allowed to dream of things that cannot be.

      Your travel to space puts everything in perspective - how grand and great the universe is, how small, though not insignificant , we are.

    • LowellWriter profile image

      L.A. Walsh 8 years ago from Lowell, MA

      Thank you both for your comments. Much appreciated! :o)

    • Lgali profile image

      Lgali 8 years ago

      wow very interesting hub

    • brad4l profile image

      brad4l 8 years ago from USA

      I think one of the things that has always intrigued me about space exploration is that it puts in perspective just how small a role we play in the universe. This is not to say that we as people are insignificant, but rather that there is much more to our reality than simply the Earth alone.

      As far as actually traveling into space myself, I think I would like to wait until we have space ships more along the lines of Red Dwarf...