This is quite a strange blog to write, but if you’re patient, I’ll explain why I’m posting this particular blog. I have always felt connected to the moon and this connection was felt from when I was a very young child. My father would sit on the steps of our South Philadelphia row home and point out the different constellations that he knew at the time. But, if there was a full moon, my dad would tell me how farmers, sailors and ancient travelers used the moon and the North Star to guide them on their travels or to do their seasonal plantings.
The Moon, which controls our oceans’ tides and maybe, just maybe, our personalities, is moving further away from us as you read this blog. It’s not noticeable, just a mere 1.5 inches per year. Scientists say this retreat is caused by the gravitational torque on the lunar orbit. Whatever the reason, it is the most worrisome to me that we may lose our closest friend eventually.
Most people don’t even know about this slow farewell, but I do. My reverence for this fellow traveler that stays by our side as we make our orbit around the life giving Sun is a source of comfort to me. When I was a child, the moon looked so much larger. It filled the night sky and cast its protective light down upon me. I find that I even sleep better when there is a full moon. While others become crazed, I sleep the sleep of innocence
Growing up during the early 1950’s, there was talk of one day landing on the moon. In the late 60’s our country did put a man on the moon. Mankind not only landed on the moon, but we walked on the moon. How utterly fantastic those days were for those of us who look upwards for our inspirations. The hopes and dreams of the entire world hinged on whether we could build and maintain colonies on our nightly companion, unfortunately for mankind, our attention was drawn to war and making lots of money. When we stopped looking up at the stars, we became angrier and nastier to each other
Today we’re concentrating on Mars and send out satellites and robotic rovers to study the surface of Mars with hopes of eventually landing and colonizing the red planet. We have an international Space Station and the powerful Hubble telescope to see the vast universe beyond our solar system.
We will land on Mars, of this I am certain and, I’m pretty sure that we will eventually colonize Mars. We are explorers by nature. There are moons that circle Mars, Phobos and Deimos, but are they as special as ours? Will they shine as brightly? Thousands of years from now, will the people of Mars look down upon a dead earth that was destroyed by climate change and war and even remember how important the moon was for us? Will they think fondly of her?