Monday, May 21, 2012

The Butt-End of the Eclipse

What could the recent eclipse augur? The death of disco music stars, maybe.

Yuriko tells me that the Japanese media were all atwitter about the annular eclipse over the islands. As well they should be, since apparently the last time Japan saw a ring-of-fire eclipse was nearly 1,000 years ago. Yamato Japan, that is, since Okinawa caught one only a few decades ago.

Not long ago I bought a few pairs of eclipse glasses. Were these even on the market in the mid-80s, the last time I experienced a partial solar eclipse? I don't remember. I didn't have any anyway. Actually I bought the glasses for the Transit of Venus next month, but they came in time for the partial eclipse.

Except that I didn't think we'd get to see any of the eclipse, since it rained much of yesterday afternoon. But at about 7 o'clock some of the clouds cleared away. Since the sun was pretty low, we went to the nearby park and stood on some of the playground equipment. It was still hazy, but even so a slightly clipped Sun was just visible through the glasses for a few minutes, before dropping below the trees.

The transit is near sunset, too. We're going to have to find a place with fewer trees, or a higher elevation.

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