Like a lot of native New Englanders, Jessica Meir spent some time this past weekend doing a little leaf peeping.

"I was hoping to see some fall foliage colors," said Meir, who is from Caribou, Maine. "It’s a little bit tough to tell the difference right now, but we’ll see as we go throughout the season."

To be fair, Meir was doing this from about 250 miles above the earth, aboard the International Space Station (ISS). She made history last Friday as one of two astronauts to participate in NASA's first all-female spacewalk.

"I will never forget that moment, coming out the hatch and looking down and seeing just my boots and the earth below," said Meir. "And it was such a spectacular and beautiful sight. It was really quite overwhelming."

I spoke with Meir this week as I sat at my desk in the WGBH Newsroom and she floated in the zero-G environment aboard the ISS.

On Friday, over a span of seven hours and 17 minutes, Meir and her counterpart, Christina Koch, completed their mission to replace a failing part of the ISS power system — and even took a quick phone call from the president of the United States. On the call, Meir paid homage to the long line of female engineers and astronauts that paved the way for her and Koch — and made an appeal to the explorer in all of us.

"We hope to be an inspiration to everybody," said Meir. "Not only women, but to everybody that has a dream. Has a big dream. And is willing to work hard to make that come true."

And when it comes to dreams fulfilled, Meir knows what she’s talking about. I first met Meir back in 2013, after she was selected to train as a NASA astronaut. She explained to me then that her quest to become an astronaut began when she was 5 years old.

"My first real memory is — I think it was in first grade — we were asked to draw a picture of what we want to be when we grow up, and I distinctly remember drawing an astronaut," she said.

At the time, Meir was a professor at Harvard Medical School, with a resume already bursting at the seams — she'd earned her PhD, become a licensed pilot, and done research expeditions in the frigid waters off Antarctica, to name just a few of her accomplishments. And all of it was done with one goal in mind.

"All kids say they want to be astronauts," she said. "But maybe I just wasn't creative enough to come up with anything else and change my mind along the way."

When Meir got the call from NASA, she had been dreaming of — and working toward — becoming an astronaut for 30 years. And as she prepared to head to Houston for the start of training, she told me she already had settled on a new goal.

"The next life dream would definitely be getting into space. From the time I was 5, I sort of envisioned that — being an astronaut — and I think that would be the ultimate, really is just being in space and looking back at the planet," she said.

This week, I reminded Meir of that conversation we had back in 2013 — before she spent six years in intense training, before she climbed aboard a Soyuz Rocket and blasted up to the ISS, before she floated out into space with the earth glowing brilliant blue miles beneath her and made history. Once again, she had reached her goal. And once again, I asked her whether she'd given any thought to her next one.

"To go to the moon," she replied. "That’s always the image I had, from the very first drawing I did when I said I wanted to be an astronaut in the first grade. [I] was standing on the surface of the moon — so I think maybe I’ll make that my new dream."

Meir is slated to return to the Earth in a few months. NASA is aiming to return to the moon in 2024.