The Last Candle

July 10, 2011 § Leave a comment

My most cherished childhood memory.

At 4:oo am french time on july 21 1969.

Our parents woke us up without warning.

To see the first humans walking on the moon.

Live.

Never before

Had I been awakened in the middle of the night for

No children reason.

The slow transmission

Grainy images

The coolest language

In radio voices.

The light of black and white TV

In the moonless night.

My parents’ faces

And their eyes,

no one saying a word,

made it a magical

indelible moment.

Only  a few days later

Lying in a hay field

high up

In the Alps

I looked at the moon.

The Americans were walking there?

Five, Four, Three, Two, One, ..., And Lift Off

An exhilarating feeling of looking at a human

Destination, far, far,

Straight from my eyes to there.

Not in my imagination.

Real.

Ever since that day I was fascinated by the Space Program, watching launches religiously, my heart beating fast, my eyes tearing.  So beautiful, going straight up, away from the world, with awesome fire, smoke, roar and speed. Astronauts where my gods, powerful and beautiful riders, and NASA, a word that made me dream.

Many years forward I went to Cape Canaveral and saw Atlantis launch with my husband and 10 years old son. It was again so real, taking my breath away, just beautiful, beautiful.

On Friday July 8th, I watched the “last launch” on my television.

The last candle on my childhood birthday cake.

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