Douglas H. Wheelock

@Astro_Wheels

Test Pilot; NASA Astronaut: STS-120 & ISS-25; Space Station Commander; Aspiring Poet; Inspired by quiet moments, kindness and the power of the spoken word.

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Once again, the International Space Station provides a breathtaking glimpse into our Blue Planet and our celestial ‘neighborhood’.  The comet ‘Lovejoy’ streaking through our solar system.  Many thanks to ISS Commander Dan Burbank for capturing some incredible images of this comet, discovered by amateur astronomer Terry Lovejoy in early December.  This comet is best known for its survival passing through the sun’s searing hot corona last week.

Takes me back to my days aboard the ISS.  During the daylight the Earth is an explosion of life.  Color and motion jump out at you like a painting from one of the great Impressionists, with the dark, vast, frightening emptiness of space as the canvas.  This sight holds you spellbound at first.  Your mind cannot seem to comprehend what your eyes are witnessing.  But then...the night comes...the colors fade and the Earth becomes a raging ball of light.  Lightening storms, bioluminescence in our oceans, aurora...it is so mesmerizing to witness with your eyes.

Makes me think of all those years that I dreamed of being an Astronaut, and getting a chance to one day travel in space.  I used to look up to the moon and stars and wonder what it would be like to go there.  Then when I was on the ISS, I thought about what it would have been like to be a child somewhere out in space looking at our Blue Planet through a telescope.  How much more vivid my dreams would have been to travel to this beautiful blue planet raging with life.

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and the happiest of holidays!  Perhaps it is appropriate that this comet is named ‘Lovejoy’...just in time for our holidays.

Love, Joy & Peace on Earth...

http://msowww.anu.edu.au/~rmn/C2011W3.htm

http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/videogallery/index.html?media_id=125774121

Views 11,416

950 days ago

Once again, the International Space Station provides a breathtaking glimpse into our Blue Planet and our celestial ‘neighborhood’. The comet ‘Lovejoy’ streaking through our solar system. Many thanks to ISS Commander Dan Burbank for capturing some incredible images of this comet, discovered by amateur astronomer Terry Lovejoy in early December. This comet is best known for its survival passing through the sun’s searing hot corona last week.

Takes me back to my days aboard the ISS. During the daylight the Earth is an explosion of life. Color and motion jump out at you like a painting from one of the great Impressionists, with the dark, vast, frightening emptiness of space as the canvas. This sight holds you spellbound at first. Your mind cannot seem to comprehend what your eyes are witnessing. But then...the night comes...the colors fade and the Earth becomes a raging ball of light. Lightening storms, bioluminescence in our oceans, aurora...it is so mesmerizing to witness with your eyes.

Makes me think of all those years that I dreamed of being an Astronaut, and getting a chance to one day travel in space. I used to look up to the moon and stars and wonder what it would be like to go there. Then when I was on the ISS, I thought about what it would have been like to be a child somewhere out in space looking at our Blue Planet through a telescope. How much more vivid my dreams would have been to travel to this beautiful blue planet raging with life.

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and the happiest of holidays! Perhaps it is appropriate that this comet is named ‘Lovejoy’...just in time for our holidays.

Love, Joy & Peace on Earth...

http://msowww.anu.edu.au/~rmn/C2011W3.htm

http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/videogallery/index.html?media_id=125774121

23 Comments

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gnosiss 945 days ago

Beautiful

Hottellmasticat 948 days ago

Hello Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

Carlewcommittee 948 days ago

That's really awesome Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

AnaMSanPer 948 days ago

Privilege of a high look... Merry Christmas!

Kikucchi 948 days ago

thanks astro Burbank & W! #beautiful image witnessed by a fellow human being! love, joy & peace on earth as it was meant to be...

CelestlWanderer 949 days ago

so beautiful , it 's magical and moves the spirit. Thank you

Ottosonpaterfam 949 days ago

That's really awesome Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

Lagroneintegral 949 days ago

Hi Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

Vanduynhovennon 949 days ago

Hello Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

HimeIshida 949 days ago

Merry Christmas, Colonel! Thank you for those beautiful words. :))

Leftabrogator 949 days ago

That's awesome Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

Doxbecklavatory 949 days ago

That's really nice Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

Michelettik 949 days ago

That's awesome Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

EckrichSagittar 949 days ago

That's awesome Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

Hearneroughly 949 days ago

That's really awesome Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

Delmonacoballis 949 days ago

Sup Astro_Wheels awesome pic, profile me!$

Geshiela 949 days ago

Merry Christmas, my little prince...may all your days be blessed with happiness and love.

twolittlestars 949 days ago

This picture + What you wrote was like an extra Christmas present! Thank you :)

shirlywirly 949 days ago

that is a really beautiful picture,thank you and i hope you and your family have a merry christmas and a starry new year x

OPopeyes 949 days ago

Mi sueño también es ser una buena Astro. Felíz Navidad