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A Real 'Rocket Man'Tweets With Elton John

A Real 'Rocket Man'Tweets With Elton John

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The first British astronaut to visit the International Space Station took a 'long, long time' to thank Elton John for his good wishes, then paid tribute to the singer as he explained why.

When Elton John sent a tweet this week to the first astronaut from his nation to visit the International Space Station, he didn't pass up an opportunity for a little irony.

The legendary British pop singer tweeted a good-luck message to European Space Agency astronaut Tim Peake, "from one Rocket Man to another."

The out singer-songwriter and his Twitter followers finally received a reply this morning from Peake, who is the first Briton in 20 years to reach orbit. His response likewise paid tribute to the song that is one of John's greatest hits, with a witty excuse for taking so long to tweet back.

Peake's line about the time comes from the 1972 hit song about an astronaut who sings "it's gonna be a long, long time before touchdown brings me 'round again to find I'm not the man they think I am at home," and that "it's lonely out in space."

He'll find out soon enough. Peake is beginning a six-month stay aboard the ISS, dubbed the Principia mission.

Fans of these two married British dads retweeted their exchange hundreds of times, with Peake's tweet scoring more than 2,000 likes. Even Queen Elizabeth II sent her regards.

Many seemed incredulous that their tweets could reach Peake in space. Even the respected British newspaper The Independent seemed impressed, given its headline: "First UK astronaut on International Space Station tweets from space." And one witty fan tagged another iconic British pop artist, who's known for singing about an astronaut named Major Tom, in hopes he might join the conversation:

Click here to follow Elton John and click here to follow astronaut Tim Peake.

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