Monday, December 5, 2011

Rocket Science, Stage 3

This is the day! It is another hot and lazy summer day. The boys walked up the road to the parking lot, kicking the gravel as they went. Beautiful! There were no cars in the lot this afternoon. They quickly moved to the very center of the lot, about forty feet south of the storage shed. The boys ever so carefully set the rocket at just exactly the right attitude to achieve maximum flight. The fuse was carefully installed in the engine port and cut to a two-foot length, which they calculated to be just right to allow them to move to the shelter of the shed before launch.

They lit the fuse. It burned an inch, sputtered and went out. They lit it again and headed for the shelter. As they turned to watch, they noted that the sparkling had stopped and the smoke was no longer rising from the string. The younger of the boys (younger by six weeks) cautiously approached the vehicle. It was clear that the fuse was not going to achieve its end, so the lad tilted the rocket carefully and spilled a string of fuel about three feet in length. The rocket was restored to its proper attitude and a match touched to the extreme end of the make-shift fuse. Man! Did that ever burn quickly! As the fire began to puddle around the nozzle of the fuel tank, the perpetrators scientists noted that it began to glow a cherry red. The lad more distant from the contraption yelled, "Run! she's gonna blow!"
[to be continued] © 2011 David W. Lacy
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