In the summer of 1969 when I was very much unborn, the world waited with bated breath for Apollo 11 to land on the moon safely. In the event this did not happen, speech writer William Safire wrote a letter for President Nixon to read as comfort if all failed.
When I first heard this story of going to the moon I was, as any kid would be, fascinated. I dreamed of cheese in the sky and envisioned white suits and large helmets to keep me alive. I dreamed of beginnings in darkness and living through everything. Zero-gravity and touching stars.
It is amazing that while I dreamed after the fact, at the time they were also dreaming, but preparing for the worst. Failure and death due to exploration though not desired, could be a plausible result. It makes one wonder about expectations and the ins and outs of life. How in one instant you could be both happy and sad, dead and alive— in dual states.
In the summer of 1969 my dad and mom were both two and one respectively. I was decades from being born, but Apollo 11 was to land on the moon. They were hoping for the best, while preparing for everything that could happen.
Fourteen down, thirty-eight to go…