After the almost-fatal ordeal (with an experimental LEM simulator), Armstrong went back to his office to do some paperwork. “I did. There was work to be done,” says Armstrong, matter-of-factly.
“Wait a minute. You were just almost killed,” Bradley says.
“Well, but I wasn't,” says Armstrong.
Armstrong clearly remembers the lunar surface. “It's a brilliant surface in that sunlight. The horizon seems quite close to you because the curvature is so much more pronounced than here on earth. It's an interesting place to be. I recommend it.”
Armstrong knew the Apollo program had a limited life but expected it to last longer. “I fully expected that, by the end of the century, we would have achieved substantially more than we actually did.”
“And why do you think we didn't continue?” Bradley says.
“When we lost the competition, we lost the public will to continue,” Armstrong replies.
“You said you would like to see us go back to the moon, and then go on to Mars. Something you want to do at this point in your life?” Bradley asks.
“I don't think I'm going to get the chance. But I don't want to say I'm not available,” Armstrong says, laughing.
If you're looking for a hero - however you define the word - you could do worse.