Of course I was delighted the flight was over, but I still had to worry about cleaning up inside the cabin, I had to worry about the hatch, how to get in the sling, and so on.
You've done it in the simulator so many times, you don't have a real sense of being excited when the flight is going on. You're excited before, but as soon as the liftoff occurs, you are busy doing what you have to do.
If somebody'd said before the flight, 'Are you going to get carried away looking at the Earth from the Moon?' I would have say, 'No, no way.' But yet when I first looked back at the Earth, standing on the Moon, I cried.
There's no question that all the generations got excited about the first flights, with Kennedy's inspiration to go to the moon, leaving the planet for the first time, and fortunately coming back.
Then there was the challenge to keep doing better and better, to fly the best test flight that anybody had ever flown. That led to my being recognized as one of the more experienced test pilots, and that led to the astronaut business.
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