Ground Control to Major Tom: Commander Chris Hadfield and the Universe of His Experiences

As this year rolls to a close, I wanted to look back at Commander Chris Hadfield and his five-month mission in outer space. I do really get blown away by people and their different experiences and even more so when those experiences are only had by a handful of people. Just as I felt when Felix Baumgartner jumped from the stratosphere to Earth to break records on his way down, I feel a warm sentiment of pride towards Commander Hadfield.

Most everyone who is connected will know him as the man who recorded a video in space, singing David Bowie’s “Space Oddity”. He is also considered the most social media-savvy person to have ever gone up into space. But aside from all that, there is something else that intrigues me. That all this began with a dream of a boy, who wanted to fly to space when, as a teenage Canadian in the 70s, was quite the impossibility. As Canada advanced in space technology with Canadarm, a robotic system attached to a space shuttle, there was the birth of an opportunity for a kid with a big dream to fulfill his destiny.

This fascinates me because I see each event as a bread crumb trail, weaving through a fantastically interesting life. And to know that there is a person who really is one of a counted few who has done (and could do) the things he has done fills me with a sense of belonging. Belonging because as varied and as strange as all the things I’ve done can seem, all contained in my one person, I know that I could never top the disconnected strangeness of meeting a person who has actually been in space. And in a way, that makes us crew of the same boat.

Because he thought outside of the box and I aspire to do the same thing.

Thank you Commander for being an inspiration to all of us and for having dreamt a dream bigger than imagination and just as grand as the cosmos.

How to put a little variety in your space food. Chef Traci Des Jardins changes up the food that gets sent up to the space station. Chris prepares the recipe and tries it out.


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