Saturday, March 03, 2007

It Looks Like A Billiard Ball In The Sky

We had a total lunar eclipse this evening, hidden behind clouds tho it might have been. I saw one a few years ago while sailing in the North Atlantic Ocean, away from the bright lights of the big city.

As it went into the earth’s shadow, the moon slowly turned a dark red. Then, in the blackness of the ocean sky, it appeared like a white bowling ball or (as I saw it) a cue ball. Not really white, with a tinge of red, hanging there in the sky with just enough light reflecting off so it stands out, ever so faintly, against the blackness.

It’s a strange sight. You’re out there in the middle of nowhere; the moon starts to disappear and all you can see are a galaxy full of stars and this looming circle of near-darkness up above you. It goes through a few faint changes of color and then starts to come back very slowly until you once again have a full moon.

It’s even better through a pair of binoculars, a fairly strong set. You can see more of the subtle color changes, perhaps caused by the earth’s atmosphere as the sun’s light passes through it and the moon, in turn, also goes in and out of that shadow.

Everybody has a story.
Ray Evans died Friday. You know the saying, “That guy couldn’t get elected as dog catcher.” Well, Ray not only could, but did; he was the first dog catcher for the SPCA of Luzerne County. He also participated in all Wilkes-Barre City parades, showcasing his antique military vehicles.


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