Astronomy is a serious subject with great implications for all of mankind in the modern era. So much has been discovered and there is much more to learn. I am one of those devotees who want to make it accessible to the public so they understand its full import. It needs a lot more public attention than it gets. It is all about the origins of the solar system not to mention the entire universe. It is a diverse and overwhelming enterprise. It permeates every aspect of my life. I have been known to practically drown myself in emblems of my field. I have all kinds of decorative objects on my desk and throughout my home that reflect my interest in the planets. When my little nephew gave me a gift of miniature planets, I was thrilled that he recognized my passion at his young age. It was a great opportunity to give him a lesson. I can’t help myself sometimes. There is an instructor deep within. I like to take him to the planetarium as often as he likes; hence his appropriate gift as a thank you. I treasure it with all my heart. It is the perfect memento of his love and the kind of present I would easily bestow on someone else.
The theme of planets and stars was my choice when I was his age. I think I knew in my soul what I wanted to be when I grew up. Most kids think about this after prompting from parents and family. I didn’t know how to answer exactly not knowing anything about careers in the field of astronomy. My mother must have sensed something from the books I selected at the book store. She painted one wall black and overlaid it with small orbs and a sprinkling of stars. This is how I first learned about constellations as she included a few of the basic ones. I looked at the every night before I fell asleep so that I would dream I was in outer space. In my head was an odd replica of a space capsule, the pure fantasy of my imagination.
My father installed an inexpensive ceiling fan that he found at https://www.ceilingfanchoice.com/best-cheap-ceiling-fan/ because it looked nice and had a central light fixture that I could dim when I wanted to see the glow-in-the-dark paint on the “planet wall.” It wasn’t so pricey that I couldn’t decorate it as I wished. It is no surprise that I wanted to make it look more interesting. As young as I was, I personally did all the work. I added more glow-in-the-dark paint to the sleek blades and replaced the pull chain with a new one that has a little planet earth on it. It was so cool and a real coup to find. I am glad my dad choose this old-fashioned method of turning on the fan rather than a remote control (I actually had both). My school friends loved to visit. We spent a lot of time gazing into our idea of space.