Tito has now become the first tourist
in space after he blasted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome
. He had a window seat.
"How do you feel, Dennis?" he was asked from the ground. "Khorosho
," he answered, using the Russian
word meaning "Good
"It's a precedent," said the mission control
chief, Vladimir Solovyov. "Let's hope that interest in space tourism will be shown. There are a lot of rich people. Why shouldn't they fly for their own pleasure?"
"If he will sign a contract, every citizen of the planet can ride‚ if his health permits him and he comes through with the money," said Yuri Grigoryev, deputy designer at the state-run Energia
rocket company. "The station is open to commercialization."
Tito will spend six days aboard the space station with his video camera
, CD player
and nine disks (eight opera
and one Beatles
). While he was listed as a "systems operator
," he will not be allowed to touch much and will need an escort when he visits the U.S.
section of the station.