The adventures of Man's flight and the Conquest of Space have always aroused great fascination in Men's minds. Through his creative stories with winged myths and later with Science and the invention of "flying machines", Man has chased after his "dream of flying" and there have been many stages along the development of the Man-Space relationship.
Even today, forty years after the first steps on the Moon and despite the conquest of Space, Men still have an intense bond with Earth.
The letters, cancellations and postage stamps discussed in this brief overview on space mail relevant to the commander of Elbrus mission, Anatoli Berezovoy, author of the first Space to Earth letters, prove this.
Anatoli Nikolaievich Berezovoy, 51st pilot and Soviet cosmonaut, commander of Elbrus mission on board the Orbital Space Station Salyut-7 from 13 May to 10 December 1982, spends 211 days in Space, at the time the record of stay.
During the mission he writes a diary, an intimate and fascinating account of his experience, account that shows the real human side of "living in Space".
Anatoli describes the sadness of the solitude and the distance from one's family, the weight of daily tasks and the worry over health problems. It also traces a bitter description of the difficulties of surviving the breakdown of equipment on board and the misunderstandings with his flight companion and with those responsible for links between the Earth and the station.
From the description given of radio and TV links, of the biological, geographical and astrophysical experiments and medical tests, it is possible to perceive the cosmonaut's strong desire for the mission to succeed and the importance it holds for the development of Soviet and worldwide cosmonautics.
Even mail has its part, and in several pages Anatoli expresses the joy he feels upon the arrival of the supply ships and the subsequent opening of the bags containing newspapers, magazines and mail, "a glass of cold water in the scorching steppe". Moreover, he lingers on the preparation of the philatelic material, letters, postcards and documents to be carried back to Earth, "space mail" which tells us about the uniqueness of living in Space.