But its easy to laugh from inside the quarantine... its another thing when the WHOLE WORLD is watching YOU!
it might be interesting to note that the whole world was watching them that afternoon, as President Nixon talked to them aboard the USS Hornet.
I suspect it was rather a happy priviledge for them to be personally addressed by the Commander-in-Chief. There wasn't a network that did not cover this event.
What's not their fault? That they were thrust into a situtation, by chance, which would place them at the center of public and media attention on a scale that few people had been, nor would be again? And these three, not trained or at all used to such massive-scale attention, perhaps even uncomfortable with it...
Well, there's no "fault" involved. They handled it, the intrusion, the exposure, the constant attention...reporters parked outside their homes, waiting for them to appear, photographers clamoring for a shot.
That's the price of the ticket. They were all flown astronauts, and as such, had already made public appearances and had attention directed their way...but not like this.
The very next day, these three would be flown to New York, where they'd begin an all day, all night trip across the country.
Think about that...
Ticker tape parades where millions of people would see them in-person in New York, then in Chicago, then in Los Angeles. They'd give speeches, pose for photographs, have ceremonies in each city, be presented the keys to the cities, and finally, have a state dinner with the President of the United States where they had to give speeches and be the center of attention again...where they'd be interrupted by Congresspersons in the bathroom for autographs while they were trying to pee--all that sort of stuff.
All that in one day, and it was just the start of what would be the best part of a month and a half on a round the world tour, where it would be repeated dozens of times...then hometown parades, speeches before Congress, etc., etc...
Not something I would've looked forward to in the least.
They knew it was coming.
That's part of what you see in their faces.