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I wondered what was going on with these poor folks circling the earth

NASA is in disarray — they cannot restock the pantry for the astronauts up on the International Space Station, so the astronauts are having to cut calories — there’s a space diet for you. Since Columbia burned up during re-entry in that awful accident (caused by loose insulation compromising its fragile tiles during takeoff), the U.S. has been dependent on aging Russian shuttles.

“The two astronauts aboard the International Space Station have been asked to curb their calories because of a food shortage, NASA officials said Thursday.

Supplies of food and water on the station have fallen so low that if a Russian cargo vessel scheduled to arrive on Dec. 25 has a mishap or is significantly delayed, the astronauts, one American and one Russian, will have to abandon the station and return home months ahead of schedule, the NASA officials said.

The space station manager at NASA, William Gerstenmaier, said the situation was manageable if nothing unexpected occurred. But Mr. Gerstenmaier said juggling consumable items like food, water and even light bulbs had been a challenge since the space shuttles were grounded because of the Columbia disaster in 2003.”

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding