Saturday, May 26, 2012

Eclipse and Storm

Not being particularly astronomical in nature, I didn't make it a point to note the time of the solar eclipse the other day. In the back of my mind, I suppose, I figured I'd know it if I saw it.

The evening of said eclipse, we were watching TV (the ever-engrossing Food Channel) when I noticed that the light outside had gone a bit odd. I grabbed a piece of cardstock from the studio, punched a hole in it with a pencil, and ran outside. My pinhole was really ragged, so I punched another (that's why there are two images in the shadow.)

Having been followed outside by most of the rest of the family, I was able to take advantage of Lillian's wits, as she recommended I use the garage door as my "screen." There it was, the eclipse, imaged.

Our neighbors across the street, who were also viewing the eclipse, ran over with some amazing filtered "glasses" with which one could look directly at the sun and see the eclipse. They have been cleverly spending time at our local branch library, where the librarians were giving out these paper-and-plastic eyeglasses for free. It was truly amazing technology, and I wish everyone had access to it.

And then, yesterday, which was the date of my father's birthday, just two weeks before my own, we had a thunderstorm with about 40 minutes of pouring rain. This may not seem like much, but we can go for years here in the Central Valley without seeing a thunderstorm, and certainly any rain at all after March and before November is unusual.

Bernie and I sat in the garage with the door open and watched the weather come through, the ominous dark clouds, the dancing rain, listening to the peals of thunder.

The very first instance in my life that I began to lose my fear of thunderstorms, my dad was standing out on the front porch, watching the lightning and the rain. I hovered at the front door, wanting to be with him, in terror of the loudness of the thunder. My love and belief in him won out, and I crept to his side, seeing how he reveled in the power of the storm.

From then on, I was a storm fanatic, and have loved them so much that a mere peal of thunder during the day draws me to a window to watch the wonder, dropping everything else, and at night, sends me into a deep and peaceful sleep.

So hey, Dad, happy birthday, and though it was two weeks in advance, I'll accept that storm as being my birthday gift, too, and nothing pleases me more.

1 comment:

Cheryl said...

Nice job with the eclipse viewer!

My dad and I liked watching weather together, too. Sitting on the porch, thisclose to the rain - what could be better?