Chris Hadfield

It all started with Neil Armstrong‘s historic moon landing in 1969. While millions worldwide were inspired, for Chris Hadfield growing up in Canada, it was life-changing. That one moment sparked a dream in him, a dream to become an astronaut.

In his book, An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth, Col. Hadfield takes us on a captivating journey of his life and career, from his childhood to his final mission aboard the International Space Station (ISS). But this book isn’t just about becoming an astronaut; it’s about living a purposeful and productive life.

Raised on a farm in Canada, Hadfield made a plan at the age of 9 to achieve his goal after seeing Apollo 11 land on the Moon. He learned to fly planes at 16 and pursued mechanical engineering in college. Following a well-laid path, he became a Canadian fighter pilot and excelled at the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School. In 1992, after enduring a grueling selection process, he became a Canadian Space Agency astronaut and joined NASA‘s Johnson Space Center.

Hadfield’s first space flight took place in 1995, where he successfully accomplished the installation of a new docking module on the Russian Space Station Mir. In An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth, he shares the importance of preparation and the lessons learned from NASA’s past tragedies.

His second space flight came in 2001, when he and his crew installed Canadarm2 on the ISS. Despite encountering difficulties, Hadfield’s optimism and confidence never wavered.

Throughout the book, Hadfield dispels the notion of astronauts being daredevils. Instead, he portrays them as perpetual students, passionate about their work and willing to put in the hard work and dedication. He also emphasizes the importance of living a balanced life, cherishing family and friends, and finding joy in the simplest moments.

After his space missions, Hadfield served in various leadership positions at NASA. Despite facing health problems, he persevered and eventually became the commander of Expedition 35 to the ISS.

Hadfield provides intriguing insights into everyday life in space, from eating and exercising to changing clothes and using the bathroom. He also shares the incredible experience of floating weightless and observing the universe from the Cupola.

Through social media, Hadfield was able to share the importance of the research being conducted on the ISS, including a YouTube sensation of him playing the guitar in space.

After 146 days in space, Hadfield and his crew returned to Earth, describing the reentry and landing as a wild tumble followed by a car crash. They were then subjected to medical tests before finally enjoying their first shower in months.

An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth is a captivating and inspiring memoir that takes readers on an incredible journey from a farm in Canada to the International Space Station. It’s a reminder that with passion, preparation, and perseverance, dreams can become a reality.