Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield says he's interested in politics but has no immediate plans to make it his next career.
In an interview with The Canadian Press, he was asked whether he might use his newfound fame as a springboard into the political arena.
"I'm as interested in politics as any Canadian, of course. That determines the fate of our country," Hadfield said Friday in an interview from Houston.
"But for me personally, right now, I have no aspirations at all."
The three-time space visitor said Friday that there are so many short-term projects on his plate that he hasn't committed to any long-term plans yet.
Let alone political life.
"It is, by no means, within my stated objectives right now," said Hadfield, 53.
"The future can hold marvellous portents and we'll see what comes in the future — but for now, no, not at all."
Canada's first, and so-far only, astronaut-turned-politician, said he wouldn't be surprised if Hadfield followed in his footsteps.
Marc Garneau told the Toronto Star this week that his ex-colleague has "superstar status" and could have his pick of careers. However, Garneau added that he had not spoken to Hadfield since his return.
In the Canadian Press interview, Hadfield said his astronaut schedule — and his life — have been planned right up until the Calgary Stampede in early July, where he will serve as parade marshal.
In the meantime, the guitar-strumming astronaut is just starting to understand the scope of the attention his mission received — with all the tweets, photos, science experiments and, of course, the music video.
Hadfield, whose David Bowie "Space Oddity" cover video has gone viral, said he's still trying to grasp the fact that 13 million people have already seen it on YouTube.
He said he's pleased people might have rediscovered space exploration through his mission.
Hadfield noted that he has been mentioned in the Australian parliament and his daughter Kristin, who is living in Ireland, was to receive the Dublin Lord Mayor's award on his behalf.
But the mission did have at least one moment of heartbreak.
It came courtesy of the Toronto Maple Leafs, who dashed Hadfield's Stanley Cup dreams just as he was returning to Earth.
Hadfield said that when he landed back on the planet Monday night, he asked his wife two questions. The first was how she was.
The second question was what happened in the Leafs game.
What happened was a spectacular, perhaps-once-in-a-lifetime, collapse in Game 7 of their series against the Boston Bruins, where they dropped a three-goal lead in the final period to lose in overtime.
Hadfield said he was wearing a blue-and-white Leafs T-shirt under his spacesuit when he returned to the surface of the so-called Blue Planet.
"I decided that was the best I could do to show my support for the team," he said.
Hadfield and two other astronauts, a Russian and an American, were barrelling through the fiery atmosphere in a Soyuz space capsule while the Leafs were playing their do-or-die game.
"When I landed and the Russian search-and-rescue technicians pulled me out, they carried me over, set me down in a chair and then NASA officials hooked me by satellite phone with my wife Helene," Hadfield said.
"As soon as we checked with each other that we were alive and doing OK, the next question I asked was: 'How did the Leafs do?'"
That's when Hadfield's wife said she was sorry to have to tell him that Toronto went all the way to the end, but unfortunately didn't win.
"It turns out," Hadfield quipped, "(that) both of us went down in flames on the same day."
Ever the diehard Leafs fan, Hadfield added that he's proud of the way his team played this year and he's looking forward to next season.
"I am so proud of how the Leafs did this year," he said. "They played really good hockey, entertaining hockey, motivated and creative hockey."
Hadfield said he had managed to watch previous games in space. He had even seen the Leafs win Game 6 the day before he undocked from the station.
Hadfield was the first Canadian to command the giant orbiting space laboratory while he was on board.
"All the grains of sand in all the deserts can't compare to the number of ways I love you. #ValentineFromSpace"
"If you give wind and sand enough time together, they create art."
'The incredibly green lush wetness of the Amazon basin."
Someone Misses Starbucks
"These delicate cappuccino frosting decorations are, in fact, endless hummocks of Saharan sand."
'The Earth has problem skin; one popped, the other didn't."
It Totally Does
"Even as I took this picture I was thinking it will make a nice desktop background. And it does."
"Some fault lines are visible from space. Tectonic plates make a rift in the Andes."
"Tonight's Finale: Nature inspires awe - cloud, ice and rock in southern South America."
"Happy Alligator Lake, Mexico. I'm certain it has an official name, but that's what it looks like to me."
'Tonight's Finale: Haruna, a large and powerful tropical cyclone, wreaks clockwise destruction across Madagascar."
"This taffy-twisted African rock reminds me of a dolphin, and Alfred Hitchcock."
Freetown, Sierra Leone
"Freetown. A major west African port city, capital of Sierra Leone."
"I don't think that sand came from those rocks."
Haggis (Well, Not Really)
"This green Aussie lake somehow reminds me of a haggis."
"Glacial water burping into the Atlantic in deep Southern Argentina."
"Arid fingers of sand-blasted rock look like they're barely holding on against the hot Saharan wind."
"Mars is a very interesting planet, with its rugged, ancient surface. But this is Earth."
"Tonight's Finale: There is an undeniable beauty in human imagination. What do you see in this Saharan cloud?"
"Your perspective often dictates what you see. From here I see a puffball on an oyster half-shell. How about you?"
"Dragon skin. A bad place to take a walk, near the Horn of Africa."
"Tonight's Finale: The Himalayas to the horizon, gives me such a feeling of wild grandeur."
"Tonight's finale:You hear all about the man in the moon, but what about the man in Patagonia?"
"As I look at the verdant fjords and inlets of southern NZ, I ask myself can this possibly be real? Yet there it is."
"Where there's water, there's life. Serpentine river and center pivot irrigation farms in South Africa."
"A lot of the Australian Outback looks like somebody spilled something on it."
"Tonight's Finale: Asteroid impact - the Manicouagan Crater in Quebec. On old scar, but a big one at 100 km across."
"Split, Croatia, a fine natural harbor on the gorgeously rugged Adriatic coast."
"Cape Town, South Africa, the glinting sun highlighting the water."
"King George's Sound, Australia. Charles Darwin got off the Beagle and hosted a dance here in February, 1836."
Haruna From Feb. 21
"Eye of the Storm - Tropical Cyclone Haruna, today over Madagascar, with Canadarm2 pointing at the eye."
"Tonight's Finale: The full moon rises over the only planet we have ever called home."
"Mama Iceberg and her litter of baby ice cubes, slowly melting into the South Atlantic Ocean."
"The Outback is full of scary faces, staring up in forbidding horror."
"Tonight's finale: Northern Lights - recent aurora in green and red waves, USA and Canada below, the universe above."
"Clouds, shadows and sand, playing with my imagination."
"Earth has a bellybutton! My guess is that this perfect African circle is a meteor impact crater."
BONUS: Space Pajamas
"Weightless in my new space pajamas - made in Russia, very warm and comfy."
Next: The ISS On Twitter
<blockquote>Oil drilling draws a circuit board on the ochre landscape. pic.twitter.com/piYgOCsWYQ</blockquote>
<blockquote>Tonight's Finale: The Richat Structure. A giant gazing eye upon the Earth. pic.twitter.com/Uqv9JSh17b</blockquote>
<blockquote>An angry thunderstorm stands out against infinity. pic.twitter.com/du78qXnViK</blockquote>
<blockquote>Mt Etna, pouring heat and steam and smoke up through the snowcap. Earth never ceases to amaze. pic.twitter.com/xVjJ9oiwkW</blockquote>
<blockquote>Cloud over western Europe, rippled like water over a stone. pic.twitter.com/nlryEezlwh</blockquote>
<blockquote>Perth on the Swan to the sea, Western Australia. pic.twitter.com/MvrIuCs8eT</blockquote>
Chris Hadfield In Water
In this photo posted on Twitter by Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield on Jan. 7, 2013, the Greek Island of Corfu is shown. Hadfield is on a five-month visit to the space station and will become the first Canadian to take command of the giant orbiting laboratory in March. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press via NASA,Chris Hadfield)
RE-TRANS FOR HIGHER RESOLUTION - This Tuesday Jan. 8, 2013 photo provided by NASA, taken by Astronaut Chris Hadfield from the International Space Station, shows a view of the wildfire near Burrinjuck Dam in Australia. Look closely and you can see the flames from orbit. (AP Photo/NASA, Chris Hadfield)
In this photo posted on Twitter by Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield on Jan. 7, 2013, corn rows of sand, tightly sculpted by wind, heat and time is shown in Saudi Arabia. Hadfield is on a five-month visit to the space station and will become the first Canadian to take command of the giant orbiting laboratory in March. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press via NASA,Chris Hadfield)
In this photo posted on Twitter by Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield on Jan. 6, 2013, a Noctilucent Cloud, a rare super high altitude cloud barely visible from Earth, is seen at dawn in the mesosphere from International Space Station. Hadfield is on a five-month visit to the space station and will become the first Canadian to take command of the giant orbiting laboratory in March. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press via NASA,Chris Hadfield)
Newfoundland and Labrador, shot without zoom, is shown in a photo posted on Twitter by Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield on Jan. 7, 2013. Hadfield is on a five-month visit to the space station and will become the first Canadian to take command of the giant orbiting laboratory in March. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press via NASA,Chris Hadfield)
In this photo posted on Twitter by Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield on Jan. 5, 2013, the cities of Cleveland, Toledo, Ohio, and Detroit are shown. Hadfield is on a five-month visit to the space station and will become the first Canadian to take command of the giant orbiting laboratory in March. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press via NASA,Chris Hadfield) (AP Photo/The Canadian Press via NASA,Chris Hadfield)