Thursday, 15 July 2010

My astronaut

The Girl and I were reading about the planets.

"What would be the best planet to visit, Daddy?" she asked.

They are lovely to look at, I said, but people couldn't live on any of them. It's too hot, or to cold, or there's no air or surface. This is the only one we have.

"Could people live there someday?"

Maybe on Mars, I said -- its warm days are room temperature for us, and it has a little bit of air. It might be possible to make it a place where people could live.

"Can you take me there someday, Daddy?"

I wish we could, love, I said. We've sent robots to check it out, but no people have been.

"But astronauts could go there."

Possibly, I said, but it's very far away, further than anything you imagine.

"Have there been any children astronauts?"

No, only grownups have been astronauts, I said, and she looked devastated. But you'll be a grownup someday.

"But by the time I'm a grownup, you'll be dead!" she said.

You might be stuck with me for a little longer than that, I said, smiling.

"Do you think we could still go there?"

I hope so, I said. But we might only ever have this one planet, so we have to take care of our part of it.

She nodded. "I will."


Maya said...

I have a friend who's an Aerospace Engineer working on the commercial space flight program. He says by the time she's grow it should be in the $20k range for us to buy tickets to space. It's not quite mars, but it's a start. ;)

Robin said...

Lovely conversation! When my daughter was two, she was so taken with space that she wanted astronaut underwear. They didn't make any for little girls, so I printed out a bunch of planets, moons, astronauts, and NASA logos onto iron-on paper and made her some myself. She wore those things 'til they wore out. She still wants to be an astronaut!

BTW, we all loved watching From the Earth to the Moon, a great series on the Apollo space program.