Our life is so busy. I’ve been spending all my spare moments getting these websites up to speed! I feel like I’m blogging all the time lately, yet I’m behind. Here it is October already and I have not told you about the most important day in the year. No, I’m not talking about my birthday, I’m talking about August 21.. Eclipse day, 2017.
This started months ago when my square dance partner, Sol, suggested that while we were in Wyoming for the square dance, we ought to stay a few days and watch the eclipse… I hadn’t even heard about it.
I have always been interested in Astronomy.. In fact, had I taken astronomy in college before my 5th year, I might have changed my major. So anyhow, Sol’s comment caught my attention. I started researching, and over the next few months became pretty intrigued to experience a total eclipse.
I tried to rearrange our schedule so the RV could be in the path of totality, but Mike frankly wasn’t interested. He commented that I was forcing it too hard. He suggested I use some of my airline perks and fly.
Thinking I might be too late to make plans, I made my reservations the next day. The flight was actually reasonable for some strange reason, and I got the last hotel room in Portland. The best part is, I got it for free with points. The car proved more difficult, but do to my association with IBM that also turned out reasonable. Had i not worked for IBM, the 24 hour car would have cost me $800. Once I got that all set-up, I started looking for a friend to join me. My best buddy, Donna Brett, jumped at the wacky girlfriend weekend adventure.
I flew to Portland Sunday morning, met up with Donna in Beaverton (a town we both lived together in for a brief moment in our lives), spent the morning at the Saturday Market downtown Portland, and the afternoon at Mike’s cousin Raylene’s house, enjoying her boat house on the Columbia river. Gary and Raylene took us out for a sunset boat ride… Lovely!
The next morning, fearing the traffic, we got up at 3:30 and drove the 30 minutes (turns out there was no traffic) down to our viewing spot near Salem… deep enough into the shadow to assure that we wouldn’t miss it, but not so far as the traffic back to Portland would be an issue. We parked at a highway exit. When we arrived at 4am, there were about 6 other cars there. When we got up from our naps, by 7am it looked like this.
The event didn’t disappoint. It is something very hard to describe, and many do it better than I.The cows laid down in the field, the stars came out. It was beautiful, fascinating, awe inspiring and over in 2 minutes! For those of you that think 98% totality was good enough.. I just have to disagree.
It has been 99 years since the last total eclipse moved coast-to-coast across the mainland of the US, but it will happen again in 2024, on April 8th. I’m going to be watching again from outside of Portland, only in Maine this time.
Our life is so busy, I can’t keep you all up… But I wouldn’t change a thing! Until next time… Keep watching the sky.