Over the past few months, my son, David, has made steps toward his new goal of becoming an astronaut. I blogged about his decision to complete Physics 11 in summer school so that he could take Physics 12 during his grad year of high school, and the extra inspiration that came when Commander Chris Hadfield shared my blog with his social media sites. To a 16-year-old, this is a HUGE deal. Commander Hadfield encouraged David and his dream of becoming an astronaut is stronger than ever.
Since then, I have been following many astronauts and space exploration twitter accounts and have been trying to learn about this “final frontier” that my son would so dearly love to explore. I have had great twitter interactions with Dr. Phil Metzger (@Philtill777) of NASA’s Kennedy Space Center , as has David, and Dr. Metzger has given great advice on which direction David should head with his studies. Certainly the road has not been paved by many Canadians, but Canada has definitely made an impact in the world of space sciences and we are proud to support the important work that the Canadian Space Agency and Canada’s astronauts are doing.
On Wednesday, November 6th, an opportunity arose that would put David in the presence of one of Canada’s active astronauts, David Saint-Jacques. The Vancouver Aquarium was hosting an evening with an astronaut, and my son would have the chance to meet one of his heroes and watch the launch of the latest Soyuz spacecraft while a real astronaut did commentary! Unfortunately, I was very sick with the flu, so was not able to go to the event, so Shawn (my husband) and David went on their own. You could say that I was a little jealous and that would be a huge understatement. I knew that it would be an amazing night…and I was right.
To involve me in the only way possible, Shawn was texting me a play-by-play of events. He sent photos and quotes, so I was live tweeting the evening without actually being there. The digital age came to the rescue and included me even when I was sick! Following you will see the tweets that I sent that night, along with responses from the Canadian Space Agency. And, thanks to my tweeting, the Canadian Space Agency presented David a CSA pin while he was waiting to meet David Saint-Jacques. He has worn that pin every day since receiving it, and looks to it to keep him focussed on his goal. Can you say inspiring?