Fragile Oasis

Connecting Space and Earth: Learn. Act. Make a Difference.

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The British Are Waiting

On July 4, 1776, a fleet of British naval ships was waiting in New York Harbor as the representatives of the 13 American colonies gathered in Philadelphia to declare their independence from Great Britain. A few days later, two frigates raised anchor, and with guns blazing charged up the Hudson River passing fortifications on the New York and New Jersey ...Keep Reading

Music on the Spectrum

There is always someone playing music somewhere! Recently, I was lucky to see the spectrum from one end to the other. First, I played onstage with the traditional Irish band The Chieftains at the Houston Symphony. Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfied joined us from aboard the International Space Station. Chris has been my friend, a fellow astronaut and a fellow band ...Keep Reading

To Be Continued ...

"There is no escaping our obligations: our moral obligations as a wise leader and good neighbor in the interdependent community of free nations..." – John F. Kennedy, Nov. 3, 1961 in establishing the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) I have often expressed the strong belief that the technology developed for space exploration and the research conducted in space ...Keep Reading

Hunting Asteroids

I used to love looking out the window of the International Space Station when we were flying over the dark side of Earth, watching tiny asteroids leave bright trails as they hit the atmosphere hundreds of miles below us. These tiny asteroids also had bigger cousins who have left their mark on our fragile oasis, in places like the Manicouagan ...Keep Reading

One Young World Summit - The Key Is We

Witnessing more than 1,000 young people from 200 countries building the foundation for the legacy of their generation is a remarkable experience I won’t soon forget. These young people were delegates to the 2012 One Young World Summit, which helped them make the lasting connections that produce the cooperation and collaboration necessary for positive and sustainable change on a global ...Keep Reading


Well, we are essentially packed – we even put away our Harry Potter glasses…(medical glasses to adjust for ANY vision changes with one pair of glasses). Too bad they look dorky. 100 years ago or so, we started flying, Girl Scouts were established and the Oreo cookie was invented50 years ago or so, the first Satellite was launched 25 years ...Keep Reading

With A Story To Tell

It’s been said a million times, “life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.” It’s a beautiful quote by one of the most important and influential musicians, artists and humanitarians of all time, Mr. John Lennon. It ticks all the iconic quote boxes: it’s short, to the point and unequivocally accurate. I want to write a quote like ...Keep Reading

Packing for Earth

Now it is time to start thinking about coming home. Up to this point I haven’t, and sort of denied it. I am still in denial, but I am going through the motions because I don’t want to forget something when the hatch closes…so we are preparing. Space is just really cool. I love it here, just like most folks ...Keep Reading

Turning Over A New Leaf

Fall is beginning in the northern hemisphere. It is easy to see that from up here – the many agricultural fields that were bright green two months ago are all starting to become brown. You can’t stop time. It’s funny, these things, the natural changes on Earth, the seasons, the real day night, the wind then calm - those are ...Keep Reading

It's What We Do

September 12, 2012: The Undocking and Release of the Japanese H-II Transfer Vehicle-3 via NASA TV I might have jinxed it. On Tuesday, September 11th, I was explaining my role as a CAPCOM (Capsule Communicator) at Mission Control Houston for the International Space Station. I said, “It’s like in Apollo 13, when the crew calls down and says, ‘Houston, we ...Keep Reading