Logbook #30


Le chapitre 30

Xu sat comfortably at the table and nearly drooled at the spread of fresh fruit and vegetables that were laid in front. This has to be the best part of the visitor’s arrival; food that had been growing on Earth less than a week before and now sitting awaiting her grasp. Her fellow three colonists were also comfortably sitting down while their guest Max and the capsule commander, Henri, were doing their best to remain solidly seated in the low lunar gravity. Given the openness of the Hab and the sensitivity of much of the equipment, they seldom had any food in the open; preferring the convenience of re-usable plastic tubes. This open meal followed the same protocol they’d developed for their banquets held after every lunar council meeting. Food choice minimized the chance of crumbs and particles and all liquid was kept in closed personal containers. Something like the spill proof cups given to toddlers. She was looking forward to the feast but she enforced the precautions so that it didn’t come at too high a price.

While gazing upon the food, she found herself remembering her acceptance of the hand-carried container from Henri. The air-tight container held an interesting combination of soil, water and select seeds. This was to be the first of many. She was going to take the container and place it into their underground refuge to protect it from solar radiation. Scientists on Earth had decided to enact a plan to protect terran life forms. As much as the Seed Vault on Spitsbergen preserved seeds for the future, the seed vault on the Moon would do the same thing and include the ability to withstand total-Earth catastrophes. The first container held spores for ferns and seeds for some grasses. Later ones would be for larger, more complex vegetation; some bushes, shrubs and simple trees. She couldn’t help but connect their seed vault with the feast laid in front and wonder what the future had in store for all of humanity. Heavy topics for a celebratory feast but that was how her mind worked.

She smiled as Henri finished his toast and Max wobbled upward with his plastic cup of wine to lead in the traditional ‘clinking’ of glasses together. She joined everyone else, said “cheers” and sat down to begin eating. Most of the food was prepared so she could easily reach in with fingers to a waiting very ripe piece of blood orange. Given their special health status as an isolated cluster, the colonists had all been cleared of contagious diseases and the same was being enforced for all visitors. Because of the close confines of the Hab, the colonists had progressed toward somewhat particular health regimes. They were little concerned about the cross-pollination of diseases while being very concerned about the possibility of introducing diseases. So far they’ve been lucky with not even the appearance of a common cold to slow them up. Hence, eating with fingers was the norm. Her sticky finger dug back into the cornucopia to dislodge another tasty morsel and she suppressed a small shudder as she watched Max and Henri do the same. Somehow, she still considered them as unsafe outsiders who were more of a liability than an asset. She smiled, shrugged and carried on sampling all the different pieces while leaving enough for everyone else. The colonists safety was always at the back of her mind and while sometimes it prevented her from getting a good night’s sleep, she and her colleagues depended upon it.

As the time passed, slowly, ever so slowly, she relaxed and lost herself into the moment. Wine was a novelty and as she couldn’t digest it, she had a small amount of lychee fruit juice instead. Max had brought a unique collection of global music with him and the air was filled with chords and notes. At the center of the table, their artificial LED tree flickered and glowed like an antique candelabra. In a few short hours they would bid farewell to their guests who would go sleep in their own spaceship. Tomorrow, the colonists would host another two guests. The next day, they would host the remaining two guests and the day after, the guests would depart on their 3 day return trip. But for now, she was busy eating, enjoying and contemplating Henri naked and alone with her.


Dear Fellow Lunar Enthusiasts,

We’ve started into our second year as an organization. Remember to submit your membership fee to keep our organization functioning. We can’t continue without your help.

It seems that every month sees a new announcement about an imminent project to occur on the Moon. One is Moon Express that recently tested its lander vehicle. They hope to build the capability, i.e. transportation technology, to mine the Moon for profit. While this and other projects have laudable goals, do they include the creation of a permanent residence for people? Or is this a by-product of their endeavour. Rather than leaving this up to chance, we’re making a permanent human presence the primary goal. This presence will generate even more announcements about what’s occurring on the Moon.

We’ve been putting more effort into defining our expectations. We’ve prepared our Concept of Operations for our first lunar building block here. Please review it and get back to us with any comments!

Mark Mortimer

Lunar Colony Fund

What can you imagine here?


Getting the Bucks for Buck Rogers!

Logbook #29


Le chapitre 29

All Jean wanted to do was pull out his light sabre and have at the so called ‘guest’ from another planet. Instead he put his hand forward to shake Maximillian’s hand. Much to his surprise, Maximillian pulled Jean into a warm, full body embrace. Jean still felt uncomfortable with expressing his feelings with his other three colonists. This contact with a near total stranger put him more on edge. He can imagine his Obi-Wan saying, ‘be patient my padawan.’

“Welcome to our humble and somewhat cramped home.” he heard himself smoothly say. “We hope your stay is exciting and fruitful.” he continued.

Though he was thinking that he hoped all the visitors either would immediately leave or simply fall off any nearby cliff.

Max replied, “Jean, this outpost exceeds all I’ve ever thought of. Not long ago, I could only imagine extending our race off of Earth. Now here your are representing all of mankind and laying the foundation for our journey beyond.”

Really though, Max couldn’t give a rat’s ass for the colonists or the colony. He was solely thinking how he could use the base and the surrounding resources for personal benefit. If he could establish a small industrial capacity then he could corner the market for off-world fabrication. Simply showing the capability could make him and his company the biggest investment opportunity since the Dutch East India Company. This wasn’t a pleasure trip nor was it some political stunt. His only interest was to establish a revenue stream beyond anyone’s dreams. So, he couldn’t wait to get this charade completed for the cameras and to progress the work that he and Valentina had already begun.

After a few more pleasantries, Jean brought Maximillian, or Max as he strenuously requested, through the entrance module and into their work area. The colonists had sealed off their private quarters at the end of the module with the desire to keep a slim bit of privacy in their lives. The ever pervasive telerobotic camera unit filmed everything; both what Max saw and what surrounded Max. It had preceded Max in an earlier supply ship and was now an instrumental link between the group on the Moon and the inhabitants on Earth. This had been Max’s idea and it was coupled to a pay-per-view charge. Viewers could choose to view from any vantage point and, with Max’s new 3D proprietary system, they could immerse themselves into the experience. Profits were split between the colonists and Max’s company. And once the visit completed, the unit would become the colonist’s surgeon. That is, the unit would be controlled by a surgeon on Earth who would be able to undertake any necessary operation upon colonists or guests. The challenge had been compensating for the Moon-Earth time delay which field trials on Earth had shown could be dealt with. What wasn’t known to anyone else, even Valentina, was that buried deep in the unit’s software a dormant subroutine allowed for Max to override the unit and have it complete his tasks. All in all Max wasn’t a very pleasant man. But he didn’t get to where he was by being pleasant.

Jean swept the air in front of him and say, “This is our everything; our home, our laboratory, our office, our rec-room. Please join us at our table and share in our meal.” Jean thought it odd that eating food at the same time as another person somehow bonded them together. It felt more like a caveman tradition than a necessity for space travelers. Still, it was in the script and he was happily going along with the role. After all, every bit of food on the table had been delivered to them from the guests’ vessel. If the people on Earth could only see their typical meals of plastic wrapped goo then they probably wouldn’t be so interested in becoming part of the colony. However, their endeavour still had a huge debt to pay off. They had to do so before they could claim themselves as being self-sufficient; their primary goal.  Even if it meant being hand-maids to privileged tourists.