At 9am, Wednesday 21st March 2001 (Russian time), the Mir Spacestation (space-Lada) enters the Earth's atmosphere. Decelerating from a speed in excess of 17,000Km/h, it is expected to break into 7 major parts, and fall to Earth, landing "somewhere between New Zealand and Chile".

About 11pm - 12am, Thursday 22nd March 2001 (New Zealand time), a red fireball will hurtle across the sky, tracked by the world Super Powers. Meanwhile, tucked up in our beds, we, the innocent parties, will pull the covers over our heads, squeeze our eyes shut tight, and hope it misses us.

The Russian government have taken insurance (of a monetary kind) on the off chance that it hits us.

Stunt people receive huge salaries for putting their lives at risk on the set. War correspondents receive massive pay outs for reporting in dangerous situations. Us kiwis will be lying in our beds tonight, hoping we don't wake up in a smouldering crater the next morning.

Send me your roubles now - I have less than 38 hours to spend them.

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