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For the second time in four months, American astronauts and Russian cosmonauts shook hands in space after the shuttle Atlantis and space station Mir docked flawlessly at 1:27 a.m. EST. The two crews represent four countries (the United States, Russia, Canada and Germany), a record for a single spacecraft. "We've never done anything quite like this," says TIME aerospace correspondent Jerry Hannifin. "Flying over Russia and in range of a Russian control station, the Atlantis crew maneuvered the 100-ton shuttlecraft, with this big docking tunnel sticking 15 feet out of its payload bin, very slowly -- at the rate of an inch per second -- through a forest of antenna and solar arrays. It looks like a big mechanical porcupine with five to ten inches of clearance. The Atlantis crew rams it into the docking port on the Mir. A huge metallic kiss." When the two crews met, Hannifin adds, the Americans presented them with chocolate and "about 900 pounds of potable water."