Now the kids had been going fishing the last two days in the mornings. They hadn't caught any fish, but one kid had caught a crawdad (a real ugly sucker), and for some reason it was onhand. So crawdy became our first test pilot and was loaded onto the rocket.
The flight was beautiful. The rocket shot straight up, lost its speed at apogee, released its passenger and dropped back to the ground. The airborne crawdad spun lazily and tumbled back to the ground, all eyes glued to until it hit the gravel road with a satisfying thud. The crowd cheered mighily for what was probably a state record of the highest altitude attained by a crawdad flying solo on a rocket.