The Beginning of the Next Step

We, the United States of America, and we, as one human race, have reason to celebrate.  If we lived in a well-adjusted world, where cooperation was more important  than politics, the celebration would be so much more widespread than the minor splash of a day’s headlines.  It should be.

An item, which was conceived, visualized, engineered, built, launched, tracked, and communicated with by human beings, entered interstellar space four days ago.

Think about that.  How wondrous an accomplishment; how truly remarkable.  We, residents of Earth, have reached out into the long dark and are traveling between stars, in the spacecraft Voyager l.

I feel I should explain my nearly unmeasurable enthusiasm at this event.  I am a child of the early space age, of Atlas rockets and the moon landings.  I lived my teen years in the presence of giants, when NASA and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the Johnson Space Center in Houston were names we heard almost every day.  Then was the beginning of the program that grew into flights of the Space Shuttle, and the Cassini-Huygens complex survey of the Saturn system.  The International Space Station is a descendant of the rockets I watched with such awe.

I already know that more people think I am overreacting than the ones who understand.  I hold no grudge, nor am I trying to make anyone think or feel about this the way I do.  But for those of my readers who do feel the way I do, about humans reaching interstellar space, celebrate with me.  We are part of a space-traveling people.  How cool is that?

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