Commander's Log, Mars Date 1321229.9
The journey to live on Mars means leaving behind more than just material goods on Earth. It means saying goodbye to friends and family, knowing that future communications are limited to digital letters, social media blips, and occasional one-way videos. Crew-mates fill the role of loved-ones but cannot replace the bonds of kinship and childhood camaraderie.
My mother told me before I left Earth that she wished I was headed to the Moon because it's only a few days away and I'm less likely to die there. One crew member's wife gave birth recently to a son he's yet to see. Another's parents read my logs to her sister over a family dinner now one seat smaller. Let this serve as a message of love to all our families -- we have not forgotten you despite the distances of space and time.
Martian explorers will one day make new families here at our new home. This raises a host of ethical questions humanity has begun to ask but has yet to answer. Should existing Earth couples be sent together? Or an equal number of single men and women? If the latter, should their pairing be pre-arranged or let to evolve naturally. Space sex will happen, if it hasn't already. Babies will be born who will never know life with an atmosphere and oceans. Bonds of love will form and hearts may be broken. Family-making is not an exact science but an emotional act.
I've already noticed the seed of these emotions here on Mars. Shared holidays. Glances that linger a beat longer than necessary. Coincidental birthdays. Tales of lovers past.
Love is an emotion that makes us human. It is an emotion we each need, deep down in our core. And it is an emotion we shall unconditionally give and graciously receive -- to our family on Earth and to our family on Mars -- until our dying day.
Commander Check-In Report
Crew Physical Status:
Healthy but tired from late night last night.
Eva Depart Time: 12:07
Eva Return Time: 13:39
EVA Highlights : Deposited astrobiology experiments into test locations.
Repaired one charging cable for EVA suits.
Report Transmission Schedule:
Science Report (Biology)
Science Report (Geology)
Plans for Tomorrow:
Water resupply. Expect for hydroponics valve to arrive and complete construction. Routine science work.
We are very proud of our weekly video, but it is a large file (25 min, 1.45GB). We've spent all day sync'ing it to MDRS Google Drive. It is still uploading. Hopefully it will be finished uploading soon. Uploading does not go against the daily download quota.