So the Daily Prompt today asked “When you were 16, what did you think your life would look like?” I was a junior in high school when I was 16. That year I took a science class called “Earth Science”. It was one of my favorite classes ever. It was probably the only class that I did all the homework for, and not only did I do them, I did them willingly. I did rather well in that class, and I decided I wanted to be an astronaut. But not just any astronaut, I wanted to be the first human being to set foot on Mars. Quite the lofty goal, don’t you think?

Mars, www.nasa.org
Mars, http://www.nasa.org

Well, it’s been quite a few years since then. I can honestly say that since that science class, I have done absolutely nothing towards my goal of being an astronaut. Nada. Zip. Zilch.

I think the closest I’ll ever come to being an astronaut is dressing up as one for Halloween, and the closest I’ll get to Mars is looking at pictures sent over by one of the Mars rovers while flying in an airplane.

Mars Rover Curiosity, www.nasa.org
Mars Rover Curiosity, http://www.nasa.org

Instead of working in the aerospace industry, I work in the customer service industry. Instead of flying approximately 35 million miles to Mars, I drove approximately 14,788.8 miles during a two month trip circling the United States of America. Instead of visiting another planet, I visited 40 states during that trip. Instead of spending months and months crammed into a tin can with a team of scientists and pilots, I got married and spent (am spending) years and years with my beautiful wife.

Instead of studying math and science and whatever subjects I thought would best help me convince NASA to launch me into orbit and beyond (whether I enjoyed them or not), I have learned my own way of dealing with people, learned more (at least a little) about writing, drawing, and learned more about myself. (Though I’m sure I’d learn plenty about myself if I was stuck into an incredibly cramped space for months on end with no privacy.)

Though how to actually get into space and to Mars wasn’t the biggest issue in my 16 year old brain. No, I mostly thought about what to say when I first stepped onto the surface. I mean, how can you top Neil Armstrong’s “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”? It would fit, of course, but no one likes to be a copy cat. (Well, I guess some people make a living by being a copy cat, but I don’t want to be one.)

All these years later, and I still haven’t figured out what I would want to say if I ever make it to Mars.

"I have no idea what I'm doing!"
“I have no idea what I’m doing!”

There’s me, being as big a dork on Mars as I am on Earth.

Alright, I doubt I have to tell you that is not really me on Mars. That, in fact, is my very first experiment with photo manipulation. If you can’t make it, fake it! It’s pretty bad, I know, but not too bad for a first timer, ehh?

Here’s to dreaming big!

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2 thoughts on “sweet dreams and space travel

    1. 🙂
      I have read the Martian Chronicles, but it’s been a long time. I’ve been thinking of picking up some Ray Bradbury again. Another one of my favorites is “Have Spacesuit, Will Travel” by Robert Heinlein, which also kind of fits, even though it doesn’t involve Mars. Another one (which I absolutely recommend) is Pandora’s Star by Peter Hamilton. I could go on all day, but I think I’ll leave it at that… 🙂

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