20 July 1969
There’s been a lot said about the Apollo 11 moon landing, the 40th anniversary of which was yesterday (US time). I’m not going to add anything to the extensive reminiscences already online, other than to acknowledge whoever it was at the Bundaberg Central State School who allowed this star-struck eight-year-old to go home and watch it on TV.
(My recollection is that I spent most of the afternoon in the lounge room wearing the NASA space suit that my grandmother had made me, picking up rocks with the BBQ tongs).
Of course, no discussion of the Apollo Mission’s awesome accomplishment is complete without reference to that famous (apocryphal?) quote from one of the early astronauts (variously attributed to John Glenn and Gus Grissom):
“There I was, strapped in my seat, ten seconds from launch, and it suddenly occurred to me that I was sitting on top of twenty thousand parts, every one made by the lowest bidder.”
Well done Armstrong, Aldrin, and Collins. You deserve the accolades.