The First Tourist on the Moon

moon over lake

Β© Ted Strutz

He looked up in the autumn sky at the full moon and took a deep breath. He loved it here on the lake, on his yacht, but the next adventure wasn’t here on Earth, but up there. They laughed at his grandiose plans, but they weren’t visionaries. He had shown them all, and now he was going to back up his convictions with actions.

The first shuttle carrying passengers to Moon Base Alpha would launch next month. He was going to be the first tourist on the Moon as was his right as Elon Musk.

I wrote this for the Rochelle Wisoff-Fields writing challenge. The idea is to use the image above to inspire the creation of a bit of flash fiction no more than 100 words long. My word count is 95.

100 words isn’t much, but combining fancy yacht, lake, and the moon, I was reminded that not only did Elon Musk recently unveil plans for a very large passenger/cargo rocket and Mars Colony, he had images of what he called Moon Base Alpha, a name he took from the 1970s scifi television series Space: 1999 starring Martin Landau and Barbara Bain.

After the past several days, I needed to write something a bit “lighter.”

To read other stories based on the prompt, go to

I’ve expanded and personalized my response to the prompt here.

moon base musk

Artist’s conception of Elon Musk’s “Moon Base Alpha”.

space 1999 base

Moon Base Alpha from the television show “Space: 1999.”


71 thoughts on “The First Tourist on the Moon

    • I think his timelines are far too aggressive but then again, I’m not getting any younger either. I have no hope of ever making into space, but I’d like to see others establish a Moon Base and put boots on Mars in my lifetime.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Think that I will stay at the lake for the time being, as I recall the fate of the first settlers who reached the USA, starvation and pestilence. However I am enjoying my present trip to Saratoga. USA.


    • Which one, Michael? There’s one in New York and another in California.

      The challenges of colonizing the Moon and Mars will probably be more along the lines of radiation and the horrible things microgravity does to the human body. You’re probably a lot safer in Saratoga.


  2. Great take on the prompt! One day we’ll make it to Mars; eventually (if we don’t destroy ourselves first) to the stars – and, yes, I do know about the practical difficulties of achieving that.
    A well written and believable story, James!


    • Thank you, Penny. As a child of the aerospace age, it pains me to admit that humans might not make it as far as I once believed, but I’ve been wrong before.


      • Sometimes it’s difficult in this kind of a written response dialogue to interpret comments correctly. I’m not sure if you realized that I was teasing. If you did, great. I only write this as your response seems to be explanatory to help me understand your story – which I think I did, and that’s why I was able to tease you in my response. Randy

        So he’s not taking the ferry, I gather. Just a big BFS? No electric car? I’m disappointed.


  3. James, I really loved this story and the related longer piece .
    Dreams are never impossible. Thanks for saying that with your stories.


  4. I love your story. Actually I thought you were going to write about Neil Armstrong and the first moon landing. This was even better as it didn’t look back to history but looked forward to the future. A visionary and his vision!


    • I was just a few days short of my fifteenth birthday when Armstrong stepped foot on the Moon. Static obscured his first words upon putting his foot onto the Lunar surface, so it was days before I knew what he’d actually said: “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” We’ve got to keep “stepping”.


    • Actually, I hear one of the really big deals is whether or not being weightless and not having a fixed horizon will make you vomit. His big dreams may be for naught, at least if he imagines himself traveling in space (I have no idea if he does or not) if his inner ear and tummy can’t handle it.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Is this hypothetical, or are you saying you know that Elon Musk has a weak inner ear and tummy? Because we have humans living in those conditions on the space station, so it’s doable, no?


      • It is not something I’d sign up for. You really have to be in peak physical (and mental) shape to endure something like that, even for the relatively short stints the astronauts currently do.


      • John Glenn was the first American to orbit the Earth and at age 77, he was the oldest man to go into space. Frankly, if I didn’t have a family who would be devastated at my death, I’d accept a ride to ISS, even if it killed me. I’ve wanted to go into space since I was a child.

        When I was about three years old, one of my earliest memories was of my Dad taking me outside at night. He pointed to a dot of light traveling across the night sky and told me it was the first man-made object people had put into orbit around our planet (no, I can’t remember what he really said, but I’ll remember that moment until the day I die). He (and everyone else in 1957) thought it was the Soviet satellite Sputnik, but Sputnik was too small to be seen with the unaided eye. What we were all seeing was one of the rocket boosters.

        From that day on, I grew up with the manned space program. I followed every story about the Mercury and later the Gemini and Apollo astronauts. I was deeply disappointed when I did the math and figured I’d be too old to be part of the base we were going to build on the Moon by the 21st century. If someone from NASA approached me today and said they were going to give me a free ride up to and then back from the International Space Station, as I said before, the only thing that would stop me is my family. I’ve been waiting all my life to go into space. It would be the realization of a dream, even if the reality of it would probably make me puke.

        Liked by 1 person

      • It would be amazing, I agree with you there. And I’m pretty good about not puking. I was once on the boat crossing the English channel in a heavy storm, and it seemed the entire boat was puking except me and my boyfriend. The bathrooms were LITERALLY filled with puke, as in, pools on the floor. The smell was bad, to say the least. The only escape was above decks, which were too dangerous to go to. And of course, the boat took forever to get to the other side, given the horrific waves. But to me it was like a roller coaster. Whee! Just with a lot more of other people puking. Related: I have been through many surgeries where I get those awful drugs that are supposed to make you sick to your stomach for the next 6-12 hours, and my first coherent statement is always: “I’m starving; feed me.” And I don’t have any family members counting on me… Hm, I think I’ve just talked myself into space travel. πŸ˜‰


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