Dear Ambassador Kathleen Stephens,
Dear American and Russian colleagues,
It’s my great honor to welcome you all at our friendly BBQ-party to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the pioneering space mission of Yuri Gagarin.
Gagarin’s 108 minutes flight on the Vostok rocket really changed the world because he taught his fellow humans a vital lesson: that they had a future in space. Of course we can not deny that at the early stage the space race of the Soviet Union and the US had a political background, so 23 days after Gagarin’s flight American Alan Shepard became the second man in space spent there only 15 minutes. But later on the two countries understood the necessity to combine our efforts in peaceful exploration of the outer space. And we achieved a lot, starting with a very successful project Appollo-Soyuz and joint space missions to the international Space Station.
For me personally the 12th of April is a very important day, because I spent my childhood in a small city near Moscow where the first group of Soviet cosmonauts lived and had the training. I’ve met Yuri Gagarin, the handsome Russian with the big smile many many times, and till now I maintain good relations with his wife and two daughters.
I am glad to see you all at the party and hope that you’ll like not only Russian cuisine and drinks, but also the special short performance of the children from the Embassy school.
Thank you, enjoy the evening.