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27 Sep, 2010 10:47

Russian-US ISS Crew back on Earth

Two Russian cosmonauts and an American astronaut made it safely back to Earth on Saturday after a technical glitch in orbit threatened their return.

Russian cosmonauts Alexander Skvortsov and Mikhail Kornienko and US astronaut Tracey Caldwell-Dyson landed in Kazakhstan on Saturday, one day later than the scheduled date.

For the first time, the Soyuz spacecraft failed to undock from the International Space Station due to several broken cogs on a hatch gear, so the return had to be postponed. The problem, which was not considered serious by the mission control, was fixed and the second attempt to unhitch went smoothly.

The cosmonauts shared some expreriences from space with the audience.

“I love spicy food, I make really hot chili sauce myself,” Aleksandr Skvortsov said. “I missed it badly. I finished off all the spicy ketchup stock on the ISS and shocked everyone by making and eating wasabi sandwiches. That's my fuel, as good as a rocket's.”

“The thing you miss there most of all is the Earth itself,” Mikhail Kornienko confessed. “I missed smells. I missed trees, I even dreamt of them. I even hallucinated. I thought I smelled a real fire and something being barbecued on it! I ended up putting pictures of trees on the walls to cheer up. You do miss the Earth there.”