I remember my father awakening me around 10 PM (GMT) in order to see it along with all the family, over a old black and white TV monitor. I was 2 ½ years old. In the subsequent days, my dad’s only efforts, focus and struggle seem to be grabbing a rare copy of a historical Paris-Match solely dedicated to the mission. At that time, it was the only available international edition in the South of Portugal, and the few copies available disappeared in a blink of an eye, like pop-corns. He died one year later, but I still have it today by my side (check cover below).

Lunar Module Apollo11 Landing site map

Figure – Traverse map of Eagle’s Lunar Module (LM) landing site at Tranquility base (Apollo 11 mission, 20 July 1969). Taken from “Apollo 11 Preliminary Science Report“, NASA SP-214, page 52, fig. 3.16. The report is now freely available here (PDF format).

Although he released an album and numerous singles earlier, David Bowie first caught the eye and ear of the public in the autumn of 1969, when his space-age mini-melodrama “Space Oddity” reached the top five of the UK singles chart. It was also with this piece that Bowie appeared for the first time on TV in 1970 (original video). After a three-year period of experimentation he re-emerged in 1972 during the glam rock era as a flamboyant, androgynous alter ego Ziggy Stardust, spearheaded by the hit single “Starman” and the album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. The relatively short-lived Ziggy persona epitomised a career often marked by musical innovation, reinvention and striking visual presentation (from youTube).

Paris Match n 1058 Spécial Lune cover 16 August 1969Figure – Paris Match nº 1058, Spécial Lune. LUNE Número Historique cover (16 August 1969).