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I promised to report back on the eclipse, so here we go. It was amazing. We drove north for two hours just to get a great vantage point. And it was worth it. There were dozens of other sun-gazers in the random parking lot with us, so it felt like an event in more ways than one. When the eclipse began, it was like a tiny bite had been taken out of the sun, then it grew and grew, until for the briefest of moments the shadow consumed the middle, leaving just the ring of fire. Wow. And it wasn’t just the eclipse itself, but the odd shadows and lighting that surrounded us as it progressed. It even felt as though the air became cooler – very fun.

Plus, we had cherry pie after the event. And may I just say, this was the only pie I’ve ever had that was actually – well, bad. Not burnt bad, but just awful through and through. Strange, right? I thought the only way you could ruin pie was by overcooking it, but I was wrong. This pie was born bad.

So why did it take me so long to report back? Trust me, it wasn’t the bad pie. It was my eye-po-chondria, an affliction that started when I was in an auto accident years ago, and suffered a blow to the head that made me see double for a while. That momentary threat to my eyesight made me super-sensitive to the fact that vision is fragile.

Yet there I was, staring up at the freaking SUN through a goofy pair of cardboard and plastic glasses. Seriously, what was I thinking?

If you read my pre-eclipse blog post, I told how we went to University of CA Davis and bought the protective glasses from the Geology Dept.  At the time, I didn’t really give it any thought. But as I took my first peek at that retina-burning event, it sank in. Geology Dept? Not Astronomy? Not even Physics?

Worse, the Geology Dept was located in the Earth Sciences Building. Seriously? Earth?

Long story short, I was so conflicted, I may have actually sprained my poor eye muscles. I was telling them to look – but don’t look – et cetera. Plus, don’t we train our eyes for years not to look at the sun? Then we suddenly instruct them to stare right into it? Sheesh. My eyes hurt for days thereafter, and like a true eyepochondriac, I kept checking them using homemade tests (mostly consisting of covering one eye and trying to read something in the distance -- silly, since I don't have perfect vision to start with!). My husband just sat nearby, watching and shaking his head, but he didn’t actually mock me with words. Smart man, right?

Anyway, I’m happy to report that once the eye strain went away, I was fine.

Now if only the pie had been good!
Kate

p.s. On Tuesday afternoon, we’ll be viewing the passage of Venus across the face of the sun. Using the same glasses, for freak’s sake. Wish me luck!!

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