Sunday, 26 August 2012
In remembrance of a true pioneer . . .
One of the most defining moments in my life came a little over 43 years ago, when I . . . just a 14 year old girl . . . sat together with my family in the living room of our small bungalow in a small town in the tiny province of Nova Scotia, Canada . . . and, with eyes of wonder, watched on our television . . . the grainy black and white images of a man walking on the moon for the first time. Oh how very amazing it was . . .
We listened together as we heard the first words uttered by Neil Armstrong as his feet touched "moon"- firma . . . "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." How amazing and historic an occasion this was . . . and I can feel and still remember the awe and wonder of it all. I was astonished at the courage of this man . . . and of his crew. As a fan of the original "Star Trek" series I had often fantasized about exploring new worlds . . . of actually going where no man had gone before . . . but here was a man . . . men . . . actually doing that very thing. It was a defining moment of my youth, and made me feel in my heart of hearts that "anything" was possible . . . and that there was nothing that man could not do, if he wanted to do it badly enough, and had the courage and will to follow his dreams.
I can remember looking up at the moon in the dark night sky in the following days and wondering at the magic of it all . . . my eyes trying to see if they could capture the image of some small dot that would be Neil Armstrong and his flight crew. I can remember praying for their safety both on the moon and upon their dangerous return into the earth's atmosphere. I can remember being glued, collectively . . . to the television during that whole time period . . . and the realization that our lives had all changed forever. Even now as I look at the photographs of the moon landing and of Neil Armstrong walking across it's surface . . . the sight of his footprints in lunar soil . . . my heart is filled with the awe and wonder of it all . . . and I am amazed all over again.
Neil Armstrong passed away yesterday, at the age of 82, and I wanted to recognize his life in some way. He was the "Christopher Columbus" of my generation. May his family be comforted at this time by the memories of the "giant" man that he was and the love and appreciation that a nation and indeed all nations had for his bravery, and all that he accomplished during his lifetime. We feel only the loss of a pioneer . . . they feel the loss of a beloved family member . . . may he rest in peace.
Courage does not mean an absence of fear,
but the ability not to let yourself be paralysed by that fear.
Baking in The English Kitchen today . . . Blueberry & Hazelnut Biscotti.