Astronomy has always been a topic that interested me. I had posters of Laika, HAM, Apollo 11-team, UFO on my walls as a kid, and of course Yuri Gagarin was one of them. Another one was Valentina Tereshkova, who was the first woman to go to space! I learned a lot about her throughout time.
Beside astronomy, I also grew up with a fascination for Russian literature and Valentina Tereshkova’s story fit perfectly in a Russian novel. Many female characters in these books played major roles in positive movements, in revolutions, fighting for the right cause. So I always believed one day someone from CCCP would do some outstanding job for real. So all though Valentina’s journey was mind blowing for the entire world, to me it made sense from the start !!
Our Valentina came from a family of little fortune. Her childhood wasn’t blissful as daily struggle was a routine. For this reason she had to start working when she was in her teens. So our soon-to-be astronaut got herself a job in a cotton factory. Her second job was in a tire factory.
And despite her struggle, her good spirit did flourish. Notwithstanding her stark situation, she managed to join a parachuting club. Now at this part of her history, we notice the shifting curve, right. Of course our prediction was right, when she became an expert paratrooper!
I believe you can understand the scenario she got herself into with the CCCP back then, politically as well as economically. Soviet Union after World War two was a terrifying state of affairs. Circumstances went bizarre when Stalin implemented aggressive policies, which caused strong western reactions and political disputes with CCCP. That fact stimulated the Cold War! Rest of the history debate, I would like to leave for your brainstorm..
During my writing, too often my mind goes off track and drifts beside the core topic. Sometimes findings are unannounced and might confuse you but that’s me. I have a habit of indicating the whole picture through one topic. I call it abstract..Anyway let’s get back to the Valentina story, shall we..
At some stage of her youth, Valentina joined the communist party. Her active role in the squad made her a potential leader. And when she heard about the female space project, she didn’t wait long to take part.
It took her 18 months of furious training and serious hours of study on rocket science and technical subjects to become a successful astronaut. Imagine the obstacles she had to overcome, as a woman back then!
Yuri Gagarin was one of the teachers who taught her about space travel. The man who already been to space. She must have proven some quality skills in her training. She did compete with other female cadets who had aeronautical background.
You gotta understand where she’s coming from. I have to tell you that her father was a world war1 hero. So don’t be too surprised about what I’m going to tell you next.
Nikita Khrushchev, former soviet leader, had a direct influence on the choice of her candidacy for the space flight! Well done Khrushchev, at least you made the right decision this time!
Her code name during the space program was Seagull. Valentina Tereshkova was in space for a total of 3 days, during which she didn’t eat. When she got back though, she was happy to accept local dishes and distributed her untouched space food.
This particular space food distribution news made me giggle. Compared to old fashioned heavy space suit, being in space and the priority of the mission; eating food must have been less important. Also there must have been handful of tasks to operate the shuttle. And I’m sure the space food on the menu was nothing but capsules and a selection of vitamins. So that has to be a turn off. And above all that, your body works quite differently while in outer space, compared to normal gravity. So, handing out the space food to the visitors was adequate to feed their curiosity. Plus food tastes much better when the job is done properly. In this case, it was l o n g due.
So with the full job satisfaction, what better to feed a woman’s appetite than earthly food from fellow human beings! Doesn’t this solo event give us a distinct view of valentina ?..
On one instance, when earth control tower tried to communicate with her they weren’t able to reach her. It turned out our Seagull had drifted off in some major deep sleep. It must be very relaxing and peaceful out there, especially compared to the world order back home!
After her space travel Tereshkova became the first female general in the Soviet Army. What an unstoppable individual, right? She was married and had a daughter in 1964. The very first baby in the world whose mother and father were in space. Yes her husband was an astronaut too.
That’s the ‘Valentina tereshkova’, world’s very first woman in space! She has not only motivated, inspired and surprised the homosapiens but also the outer world, who knows..
Right now, light of the day is starting to grow dusk, hopefully the stars and the moon are going to shine in the night Sky. If not I have to deal with some darkness anyway!