“When you reach for the stars, you are reaching for the farthest thing out there. When you reach deep into yourself, it is the same thing, but in the opposite direction. “— Vera Nazarian

The earth was miles below. Its vivid colors contrasted against the deep blacks of outer space. I suddenly recognized Lake Victoria and the Nile flowing northward from it as they emerged from beneath the cloud cover.

I expect the cosmonauts were not as distracted by the view as I was.  

On Sunday, we spent a long time watching the live feed of the spacewalk to prepare the International Space Station for a new module. While watching, we discussed a few of the miracles we were seeing.

  • The engineers who designed all the equipment being used had to consider how well they would hold together in space conditions. 
  • The engineers had to strip away everything not necessary.  Every ounce going to space is expensive.
  • The parts had to be designed to be repaired by people in those bulky suits.
  • The people there trained very hard to do their jobs and their jobs in those bulky suits are quite complex.
  • When watching the Earth from far above, we can see no borders. I am thrilled to see the multiple nationalities on the space station work so well together.
  • They were successful.

Reaching for the stars starts right here, on earth, in the imagination and creativity of people.

A few weeks ago, we watched the International Space Station pass overhead on a clear night.

Looking up at it inspires me with the belief we can together solve many of the problems that face humankind.

Yours in the calm pursuit of excellence,

Alan Willett

Photo by NASA on Unsplash

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