Friday, July 29

Juno

Everything feels terrible and strange in Oslo these days. You can only hope that there will be a day when you wake up and the tragedy isn't the first thing on your mind, or the sorrow that wakes you up in the first place. Nevertheless you simply have to go on, be strong. It feels better to live by a principle that says that you cannot change what has happened, it has passed irrevocably. There is no real point in regret and anger, you can only change things now, change them for the better, be better.

I am leaving for Kennedy Space Center in four days, it is a certainty, a sort of mental jolt, in the concreteness of it. I have to gather identification papers, make sure my visa waiver is valid, launder clothes, check the weather report, arrange flights, transfers and sleepovers. Crowds are suffocating, men in uniform frightening; yesterday we went to an island, and sitting there knowing you can't swim to shore had a surreal quality, fiction-like. I can't help but laugh at pictures and stories when I forget to be unhappy, or be glad that we're here after all. I feel like that is eventually more important than grief.

There is (almost unfortunately) a tinge of historical greatness to the victims of the terror; fallen comrades like those who fell for impressive causes, fighting cruelty, who were killed meaninglessly while standing up for something important. Killing for the sake of destroying a multicultural society seems absurd. If anything, growing up surrounded by several cultures has taught me to understand before passing judgment, it is one of my most precious experiences.

In Florida, the launch of Juno is going ahead as planned: she has been placed in the capsule, mounted atop a rocket, carried to the launch pad. Juno is going to explore Jupiter, covering 33 laps in polar orbit before plunging into the atmosphere of the gas giant. She is meant to solve the riddles of how Jupiter formed, what lies beneath the shroud of gaseous, turbulent clouds, and – at the very least give hints at – how the solar system came to be. The vastness of space that we're not even wired to comprehend, but must simply accept as fact, is one of those constant things that erases most personal turmoil and discomfort. It is huge, and we are so incredibly tiny, we're just going to have to do our best on our "mote of dust, suspended in a sunbeam". The rest is a profound, confusing and fascinating adventure, like losing yourself in your favourite book, only it's something we can discover for real and a story that we are continuously writing.

1 comment:

  1. Godt poeng, vi kan ikke endre fortiden. Men vi kan gjøre nåtiden og fremtiden mye, mye bedre. Hver eneste dag. God tur!

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