North and Central America
We have finally made it home to the only place in the universe where we know that life exists. It has taken 18 jumps to reach Earth from our starting point two thousand million light years away. At any point along the way we could have headed in a slightly different direction and we would be looking at empty space. One of the points I have wanted to emphasize is that there is a LOT more empty space in the universe than there is stuff in it.
The fact that life existed here might be detectable if you looked for a long period of time -- weeks or months at least -- from the changing color patterns on the surface. It would be difficult to be sure without sophisticated sensing equipment. On the other hand, lights from our cities are visible at night from this distance.
Copyright © 2016 by Bruce Bryson