Flights & Fancy: You Go, Girl!
- By Homer Hickam
- Air & Space magazine, May 2002
(Page 3 of 3)
I positioned Rocket Barbie on her launch rod. Frank ran the ignition wires back a few feet.
I pushed the launch button and the rocket on Barbie’s back spewed a shower of sparks. As if waving goodbye, she spun around the rod once, and then, her hands pointing skyward, Barbie hurtled upward with a grand whoosh! The crowd gasped. Old Joe began to bark. Up she went, until she disappeared into the night sky.
“Oh, look!” Rachel cried. “Barbie flew right out of her shoes!” There on the driveway sat Barbie’s tiny shoes. Somewhere high above, a barefoot Rocket Barbie flew. Then I heard her rocket give out a last gasp. Barbie had turned ballistic and was on her way down. “Go get her, Joe!” Frank cried, and our recovery crew bounded off.
A few minutes later, Old Joe reappeared out of the snow, Barbie clamped in his jaws. Her aluminum pants were a little scorched and her hair was in disarray, but otherwise she was unharmed. I took Frank’s dollar, then gave it back to him, since he’d helped build Rocket Barbie. I held her aloft for all to admire. Old men took off their hats, women sobbed into their scarves, and little boys and girls ran in excitement. At least, that’s the way I remember it.