Posted Monday night, April 24, 2017.
Recently retired astronaut Helen Kane, the main character of Meg Howrey’s new novel The Wanderers, thinking about what inspired her to get into what another character calls the “space biz”:
For Helen, the initial spark had been a book. Men on the Moon. But it wasn’t Neil or Buzz that had interested her, or even the moon itself. She had been attracted to the mission’s most unsung hero: Michael Collins, alone in Columbia, drifting around the moon in exquisite solitary splendor while Buzz and Neil had gone about the terrestrial work of putting down a plaque, erecting a flag, and gathering rocks. Every two hours Michael Collins had gone out of radio contact for forty-eight minutes when the mood stood between himself and Earth, and during those minutes he was the most alone person in the history of people. Helen still liked to think about that. That had always been her dream: space, not a location within it, just space.
---from The Wanderers by Meg Howrey.