Monday, March 14, 2016

Have You Heard the Buzz?

I have a new book to tell you about. It’s been a while since I’ve read a book that I’ve gotten excited over just by reading the title.

The book is by Buzz Aldrin, the astronaut, and is called, No Dream is Too High: Life Lessons From a Man Who Walked on the Moon.

As I said, the title alone intrigued me enough to buy the book. The title, No Dream is Too High, speaks to me because it’s something I not only believe in, but try to live by.
For those of you who, like me, are older than Stonehenge, you know that Buzz Aldrin was among the original astronauts picked by NASA. Unlike Neil Armstrong and others who were former test pilots and therefor the preferred candidates for NASA, Buzz Aldrin was a fighter pilot, having shot down MiGs in Korea. Once in the space program, Aldrin piloted Gemini 12 and set a world record for spacewalking. Tethered to the spacecraft, he floated in space for five and a half hours while traveling 17,500 miles an hour. In 1969, Buzz Aldrin, Neil Armstrong, and Mike Collins flew Apollo 11 to the moon. First Neil, then Buzz, took the now historic first steps on the surface of the moon.

I love reliving and delving further into that exciting time in our history, but I also appreciate the tone of the book. Each chapter is a life lesson Buzz has learned. Here are some of his thirteen chapter titles: The sky is not the limit . . . there are footprints on the Moon!/ Keep your mind open to possibilities/  Maintain your spirit of adventure/ Laugh . . . a lot!/ Keep a young mind-set at every age/ Help others go beyond where you have gone. And then there’s one chapter called Failure is Always an Option. In this chapter, his theory is if you haven’t failed, you haven’t tried something new. If you don’t fail, you don’t learn and grow.
What have you failed at?

I went skydiving at age sixty and landed face down in the dirt with the instructor laying on my back. Embarrassing? Oh, you bet. Did it take the thrill off the experience? Not the slightest bit.

I flew in a hot air balloon alongside the Rockies and the pilot crash landed our gondola basket into a hillside. Not exactly a text book landing. I would go again in a heartbeat.
I went snorkeling at Cabo San Lucas, panicked, and had to get back in the boat. A few years later, I snorkeled in Hawaii and was glad I hadn’t given up on the whole idea.

You could paper my office with rejection slips I’ve received from submitting articles and books over the years. Does that stop me from writing and submitting? Ha! Not on your life.
How high do you dream? Do you want something badly enough to let yourself fail?

I highly suggest you buy No Dream is Too High by Buzz Aldrin. It includes pictures and a terrific insight into the life of one of our country’s heroes. Read, among other tidbits, how he prepared himself for space walking, how he got moon dust on his knees, and the cute story of how he got the name Buzz.

Quote of the Day: That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.  Neil Armstrong