For the sake of simplicity, frugality is a prime trait of a future Martian.
Here on Earth, we give ourselves the opportunity to be more extravagant with our resources.
For instance, last night I attended a local university stage production of the play, “Eurydice.”
A story of love.
Orpheus, driven by the Muse of Music, intends to marry his sweetheart, Eurydice, even though she knows that thinking about and writing music is his first love.
She descends into hell and meets her father, where they reminisce about the past, especially their respective childhoods.
Orpheus proves his love of Eurydice by pursuing her into hell to rescue her.
Hell is a place where there is no sadness, no parental relations, no knowledge of language — you merely exist forever, emotionally dead.
Lately, I’ve enjoyed the extravagance of emotions, enjoying feelings that I’ve resisted for too long, something I haven’t allowed into my thoughts, really allowed in my thoughts*, in a very long time.
I had spent so long — decades, probably — training myself to analyze society for patterns to observe, muse over, and write about, that I forgot what it is like to be a regular human, subject to the feelings of love.
How many times do I have left to see I love a person in front of me?
How many times do I have left to fall in love with the same person, really care about her as a person first, worried about hurting her feelings if I express my love for her (what if I’m just as worried about being rejected although we’ve each said we’re not leaving anytime soon?)?
In the grand plans of exploring the cosmos, what is my life worth?
Had I not told myself to put personal feelings aside and focus on the Mars mission?
Has she not also told me she wants to go to Mars?
Have I not gone through hell in seeking her love, wanting to be with her but not own her?
To her I have given my deepest thoughts because I trust her completely, wanting to keep her as a friend if nothing else.
And friends we are.
Regardless of the characters I write about, there is still a me here inside this selfless pursuit of expanding our species outward, populating the inner solar system.
Can I not feel happiness, can I not put the past behind me and seek more time with the one who lets me be truly free?
*resisting the urge to use words like mind, heart or soul.