This morning, the Curiosity Rover touched down on on planet Mars. A new man-made vehicle joining others all the way out there on another planet, one that looks like just a red star out there in the night sky.
It’s on a whole other planet right now as you’re reading this. I find that amazing.
For me, it is an important step on the journey to our future. I take it as a given that humans will one day live on other planets. We know that Earth won’t always be here – that’s just the way it is. At some point far into the future, humanity will simply have no choice but to be somewhere else and, given the rate we’re progressing, I have no doubt we are going to be well ahead of the universe and we’ll be nicely settled in other corners of the galaxy by that stage. So each journey like this is, in a way, preparation for some of the far greater journeys that will happen in the long story of humanity.
A story which is really only getting started.
Back to right now and our Solar System is absolutely fascinating and its exploration is an adventure. And I have found that this does not go unnoticed by any young child exposed to even the most basic ideas about the planets.
My Daisy’s interest began at around two and a half years old and it started with the Moon. What is it? What does it do? Can we go there? The more I told her, the more questions she had. On her third birthday, she blew out her birthday candles and made a wish ‘ that she would one day go into space with Daddy.
Then some time later, Daisy realised something that changed everything for her.
She looked up at me, very serious, and said, “Daddy? If we’re on planet Earth and planets are in space, does that mean… we’re in space?” The answer blew her mind. And made the world a far more wonderful and more exciting place to be. In a way, her birthday wish had come true. In that instant, she changed from being a normal little girl to a space explorer. And the best part? All this space stuff is real. That makes all the difference to a child.
And for me it was then that, in the back of my mind, a show was born. A show that might spark an interest in space for a new generation, nurture that interest and turn young children into space explorers. As Curiosity reached Mars and now explores its surface, we are putting the finishing touches to an episode of Cosmo set on that very planet.
I can only hope that when it airs it will entertain, amuse, inform and inspire.
I’ll leave you with this simple thought on the importance of space from my now five-year-old Daisy taken from her Saturn artist lesson video below:
“If space wasn’t real, there wouldn’t be Earth and there wouldn’t be stars to see, planets like these and Earth, because Earth is in space.”