The royal wedding-shuttle convergence

Shuttle Discovery Commander Mark Kelly talks with his wife Gabriele Gifford before boarding a training aircraft at Kennedy Space Center May 28, 2008 in Florida. Discovery is scheduled to launch May 31, 200 for a 13-day mission, and Prince William and Kate Middleton during a visit to the University of St Andrews on February 25, 2011 in St Andrews, Scotland.
DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images; also: Danny Lawson - WPA Pool/Getty Images

The royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton is one of the most anticipated events of the year.

The launch of space shuttle Endeavour, with Capt. Mark Kelly commanding, is also a must-see for many, because his wife, Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D, Ariz.), might be there in what would be her first public appearance since she was shot in an assassination attempt.

And, observes CBS News correspondent Ben Tracy, the two seemingly larger-than-life stories are, in a strange twist, now set for the same day, April 29 -- because the liftoff has been postponed ten days..

"These are live events," points out Jessica Bennett of the Daily Beast. "These are dramatic events. These are events we've been watching over the past few months, so it's kind of reality at its best."

Both Middleton and Giffords have overcome great odds, Tracy notes. The 29-year-old commoner, who met a prince while at college, is set to become Britain's future queen. The congresswoman shot point-blank in the head on Jan. 8 is now eating, talking, and planning to watch as her astronaut husband blasts into space.

"Nobody will actually have to choose between the marriage and the mission," Tracy says. "The royal wedding should wrap up by mid-morning in the U.S., and the shuttle launch is scheduled to take place in the afternoon."

Up to 2 billion people are expected to watch William and Kate become a royal pair. Americans who have followed Giffords' remarkable recovery are looking forward to a possible moment that once could only have been thought of as a fairytale ending.

Now, April 29 may have two of them.