Mon
Jul 20 2009 1:30am

On July 20th, 1969...by C.J. Cherryh

I watched the moon landing from my home in Oklahoma City. I was teaching school as well as writing. I had gotten myself a house, lived solo, so I didn’t have any hindrances to watching. I had followed the whole process day by day, and got all the television coverage I could. In that day and age I didn’t have a video recorder. If you weren’t watching, you missed it. And I was glued to the set, all by myself, just me and the cats.

I was most relieved when that engine fired and got them off the surface. There’d been some concern about dust—even wondering if the astronauts might run into really dangerously deep dust.

I did go out and look at the sky while they were on the moon. It was different that night. Somebody was definitely looking back at us, we were looking up at them, and half the world still didn’t know it.


C.J. Cherryh is an American science fiction and fantasy author, perhaps best known for her Foreigner and Alliance-Union series. Her novels Downbelow Station and Cyteen both won the Hugo Award.

This article is part of Moon Landing Day: ‹ previous | index | next ›
3 comments
j p
1. sps49
Ms. Cherryh, if you check back here- did the space program have any influence on starting you on your writing?
cj cherryh
2. cj cherryh
I started writing so young that there wasn't a whisper of a space program, and any suggestion of one was ridiculed...except among rocketry people. I kept up with aviation; I kept up with rocketry; I read the antique astronomy books in my library; and I collected news articles on celestial goings-on. One that fired my imagination was only 3 lines long. Someone was watching a star that suddenly went out. It had gone out 60,000 years ago.
cj cherryh
3. ezesmith (Ed Smith)
I too was glued to our TV and watched the entire flight with such excitement and later after reading what Armstrong and Collins went through with the landing and how close they were to running out of fuel on the landing... I have such admiration for all of our hero Astronaut types!!! I have read your stories several times and have felt your love of things galactic. Thanks, ~ Ed

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