Great Distinctions

Fenwick was the first man to fly solo to the moon, a distinction both exciting for those in the aerospace industry, and entirely irrelevant in the rest of the world.

His flight was the primary delight for those involved. That a single person could leave earth and rise high enough in orbit to reach the moon, on their own, was a breakthrough in travel. If someone could do it solo, then someone could start larger-scale transport. That is, of course, how airplanes had worked, was the argument.

On earth, though, as Fenwick was taking the second large steps for mankind, Ignace was busy becoming the first man to paddle surf across the Pacific Ocean (he required rescue some thirty kilometers off of Japan, but he was still farther than anyone else had gone, and with the cargo ship he took back to California, he counted it a victory); Marcel was becoming the first man to verifiably walk across water (thanks to specially-designed shoe and a lot of water thickener); and Janet was becoming the first woman to stand on one foot like a stork for 36 hours straight (thanks to no particular help other than a long period of training).

Fenwick’s solo flight to the moon and back, then, received a six-second spot on the evening news; a brief mention, no more. There were other, more earthly accomplishments to trumpet.


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