Touchdown Soyuz

Soyuz Touching Down

Bill Ingalls/NASA

ISS Expedition 22 astronauts Jeff Williams and Maxim Suraev returned from the station via Soyuz capsule earlier this month, and NASA photographer Bill Ingalls captured the decisive moment. Great shot.

Without the soft cushioning of a water landing, Russia's Soyuz capsules have traditionally parachuted home to the frozen soil of Kazakhstan. Retro-rockets fire just before impact, but nonetheless, I bet that jolt is the rudest reminder possible that you are now, once again, a subject of Earthly gravity. Welcome back; it is now time to don goofy hats.