In a galaxy far, far, away, a space probe named Voyager1 blasts along at a stunning speed of 61,000 km/hr. It was launched in 1977 and has travelled further than any other object from Earth. Voyager 1 reached interstellar space in 2012 and has exceeded its predicted life expectancy by billions of kilometres. NASA will lose contact with Voyager1 and it’s sister Voyager2 sometime around 2020 or after they shut down the instruments heaters. After that, the punishing cold of deep space will have its way with the probe’s operating systems.
After reading about the legendary Voyager1, and checking out pictures from its journey, I can’t help but imagine what it has seen. The thought of it just drifting past Jupiter in complete silence makes me wish I was on-board. Imagine what that would look like? Yes, I’ve seen pictures. I’ve also seen pictures of the Vegas strip, but seeing it with your own eyes is a completely different animal. (Check out my Vegas trip: https://thedyblebible.com/2019/03/19/las-vegas-nevada/ )
Becoming an astronaut and travelling to space is starting to look unlikely for me. I’m a firm believer that nothing is impossible but I don’t like my chances. I’m no spring chicken at 31, and more importantly, my grades don’t support it. I don’t follow instructions very well and I have the attention span of a toddler. I avoid counting because I’m usually wrong, and my right ear is useless. My physical condition would be best described as mashed potatoes. White and lumpy, but also smooth and buttery.
So how will a shmuck like me ever get to see the universe? I will never be able to pass the intense training that astronauts go through. Rocket science requires difficult calculations and I can’t count. Building my own rocket is out. Ironically, my buddy Elon recently started a space exploration company. He could probably help me out with this. I’m sure there are plenty of other people who would love to see the wonders of space as well.
Traditionally in North America, the deceased are buried underground or cremated shortly after death. Ceremonies and traditions may vary, but they all have one thing in common. They are expensive. I don’t have the answers to becoming immortal or know how to make funerals any cheaper, I do however have an idea for people like me who would die to see outer space. Literally.
Being diagnosed with a terminal illness might be the hardest thing to happen to a person. I don’t mean to belittle anyone’s struggle, being told you don’t have much time to live must be right up there on the list. My solution is this: if I know I only have 12 months to live and I have a bit of money saved up, Space Ex or NASA should offer a program where they fire me off in a rocket on a one-way ticket to Uranus (giggity).
Living out my final days in a space capsule, floating through the space-time continuum is how I want to “go.” While I’m out there I might check out a few other worlds as well. I’ll sip my morning coffee watching Martian broadcast television. My bet is Seinfeld reruns will be on every channel, just like Earth. I will read before bed while the light of Jupiter illuminates my cabin. NASA will contact me now and then and ask about my experiences and important research gibberish, but mostly it will just be me and my iPad. Playing angry birds and eating my space food. Watching aliens play duck, duck, goose on Saturn’s rings. (Huge hit on Saturn). I would provide them with more tangible feedback about my environment than any probe ever could, and I wouldn’t have to die in a hospital bed. It’s a win-win!.
I’m sure it wouldn’t be cheap to fly to infinity. Maybe I could bring a roommate and split the cost 50/50. We could do a podcast from Neptune and sell our content to websites to offset our expenses. I could work on experiments for minimum wage literally until I die. I’m just brainstorming here. The point is we would find a way to pay. The ball is in your court NASA.