Today is the moon landing anniversary. I was fifteen when Neil Armstrong took his first step on the moon. It was a wonderful moment and I watched it on television with my family and some of our neighbours.
Oddly enough, though, the moment I remember as being the most emotional was when Apollo 8 was the first space craft to travel behind the moon and lose radio contact with Earth. While they were behind the moon they had to perform the manoeuvre that would bring them into a lunar orbit. It was a risky undertaking because if the burn was not precisely timed it could fling them off into space or send them crashing down onto the moon's surface. We were all hardly breathing as we watched the television screen for those ten anxious minutes. The relief when they reappeared on time was amazing. We felt like the whole world started to breathe again and we were part of that.
All these years on, that moment has been eclipsed in history by the moon landing itself, but for me it will always be the defining moment of space travel. No wonder I love science fiction.