Space has always fascinated me. As a kid I devoured any book I could get that described the planets, galaxies, and my all-time favorite: the moon missions. Videos were even better. I was captivated by the images from the moon. Clips of astronauts skipping along the dusty gray landscape made the moon look like the ultimate playground. On the list of things I wanted to become when I grew up—scientist, doctor, pilot—was an astronaut.

It never occurred to my childish mind that working on the moon was anything but a walk in the park—or that it was such a fleeting experience. One complaint each astronaut who walked on the moon shared was that there was never enough time. Their checklists were jam-packed with tasks, and they were constantly scrambling to accomplish as many of their science objectives as possible before mission control told them to wrap things up.
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