I recently downloaded the audiobook Endurance by Scott Kelly. It's about his year living aboard the International Space Station. Kelly agreed to embark upon this mission for the purposes of studying long duration space missions. More precisely, to study the physical and psychological obstacles astronauts will face during the extensive travel to Mars. For example, the lack of gravity for long periods alters astronauts' vision. This is due to the fact that cerebral spinal fluid pools around the eyes when our bodies are weightless for months on end.
I bought this book because I had followed Kelly's mission while it was unfolding. I was fascinated by the isolation, the disconnect, and the sacrifice he was willing to make for the greater good of human knowledge. What I hadn't considered when I bought the book was it was an uncanny parallel to where we are now. If there was ever a book to capture the spirit of quarantine, this is it.
What I love most about this book is it's accessible to all people. I've played it on long drives with my 71 year old dad in the car. I've played it while working in my family's garden with family members around. I've played it with all types of people who quickly became engrossed in the saga. It's a captivating story about Kelly's journey to being an astronaut, the science of space travel, and what astronauts actually do all day.
If you're looking for something you can listen to with kids, spouses, or roommates, this book might be something everyone can agree on. There are some f-bombs and other occasional curse words, but other than that, it's family friendly, entertaining, educational, and a spirited adventure that might make your quarantine a little more tolerable.
“Some parts of the world, especially in Asia, are so blanketed by air pollution that they appear sick, in need of treatment or at least a chance to heal. The line of our atmosphere at the horizon looks as thin as a contact lens over an eye, and its fragility seems to demand our protection.” - Scott Kelly, Endurance
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