The Amazing Adventures of Anousheh Ansari
Basically, it's Anousheh Ansari's world, we just live in it.
Alan Boyle as well as Space.com interviewed the engineer, millionaire buniesswoman, Ansari X-Prize sponsor and now, first lady of private spaceflight a few days before her historic voyage the International Space Station aboard Soyuz, which launched today from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Check out her blog for updates from space. Cool.
Yes it is a very long way to Earth orbit from Mashhad, Iran, where Anousheh was born (40 years ago last week -- Sept. 12, 1966). And when you're an Iranian-American Muslim woman space tourist, issues may come up concerning things like your religion, choice of spacesuit patch, pictures of your hair, available toilet facilities and other stuff. But all that falls away at liftoff.
Quick message to Anousheh (who speaks Farsi, French, English and now some Russian, too) from Space Law Probe (brushing up on the Farsi, here): تولدت مبارک
and تبریک می گویم
Be the change.