Wednesday, 30 May 2012

I'm not on a retainer

I'm currently reading in what little spare time I have, the second edition of David Woods' book How Apollo Flew To The Moon (Springer Praxis).  I read the first edition a few years back when it came out and although I have taken a few months to get hold of this edition, it was worth it.  The additions fill out the story that the first edition didn't have space for.  But most of all, it is even better than the best book on Apollo I've ever read.  And that was the first edition.
The landing of Apollo 15, my favourite Apollo of all time

 I thought I knew a lot about Apollo (though I know I am a bit behind a good many space fans out there), but I am learning so much from this book that is totally new to me.  Putting on the spacesuit in the confines of the lunar module was, I now know, like a choreographed Jane Austen style dance.  I have a good idea of where all the valves were in the spacecraft and what they did.  And I reckon I would have loved flying to the moon myself.  As an eight year old, that was what I wanted to do.

Playing in the veg patch, kicking up the dust, wearing the American football helmet that Mr and Mrs Nussman had got for my brother.  Well, they came close to being on the moon but there was something that wasn't missing.  There was too much gravity.  I couldn't walk like the astronauts, even if I could do a lot of the noises.  

The boat has been well and truly missed.  But I have got to meet a few who walked on the surface of another celestial body: Aldrin, Bean, Cernan, Scott.  And they are all wonderful gentlemen.  My current bedtime reading matter is a truly worthy tribute to those who ventured the quarter of a million miles in a tin cone of oxygen and clambered into a spiny lander to meet the lunar dust.  

If you do want to kow more, here is David Woods' site

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