Sunday, August 26, 2012

Simple Sunday ~ California

While I usually try to keep Simple Sunday simple, I can't help but mention a farewell to Neil Armstrong, whose accomplishments, while eclipsed (so to speak) by him being the first man to set foot on the moon, range farther and wider than that momentous split second in history. And to me, he was one of the men who my father, working at NASA as an engineer, helped put on that lunar trip. Growing up with regular interruptions in our school days to go stand on the playground and watch rockets fly into space made Neil Armstrong and the whole American space program personal to the children I grew up with, most of whose parents worked in some capacity with the Cape or the military. The triumphs were our own, as were the disasters. The astronauts, and Mr. Armstrong in particular, were not just the wobble-helmeted space heroes seen on television, they were the men (at that time, it was only men) whom our parents knew and worked with.

It is a gone era in time, and I'm glad I am old enough to have known and felt that wonder and awe and pride that seems to me now to hardly exist on any kind of national or indeed, international level. A new computer or cell phone, sanctioned murder of 'bad guys', or the flash in the pan idiocy of some soon to be forgotten celebrity doesn't sweep me into the OHHHHH!!!zone.

Rest in peace, Neil Armstrong and thank you for, long after that step on the moon, continuing to be a decent guy, eschewing the superficialities of your fame for concrete actions to do good for the remainder of your life.

Have a space full Sunday. Do something shyly strong.

1 comment:

  1. My memories are similar only in California instead of Florida, where my family worked in the aerospace industry. Vandenburg AFB, Twenty-Nine Palms. We didn't view launches but stood in the back yard and watched little lights moving across the sky. Invited to a pre-public viewing of the "moon rocks". Good memories.