On Sunday I saw my very first almost-total solar eclipse. I think. I mean, I know I saw the eclipse – just not entirely sure it was my first. There was one in 1994, and I remember some talk about it, but I don’t remember watching it. In any case, this was certainly my first memorable solar eclipse!
Pat and I went up to the roof with a bottle of champagne, cameras, and DIY-solar-eclipse-viewing equipment. A couple of our neighbors were up there too, and we had a great time chatting, taking pics, and witnessing the eclipse.
At first, the pinhole projector I made wasn’t working – but I read you could see the eclipse through your fingers. The effect was pretty cool!
As the moon passed over the sun, the air got chillier and the light on the skyline took a slightly rosy glow. It looked like a mix of a cloudy day (but no clouds!) and early sunset.
And then I figured out that the problem with my pinhole projector was that the pinhole was too small. Maybe the ideal projector works with a hole the size of the pin, but mine needed one about 1/6″ in diameter. While I was adjusting the projector, I got a little crazy. After all, why make a projector that shows 1 sun when you can make one that shows 9 suns?
Watching the solar eclipse – and playing around with the projector and shadows – was awesome. Now I see why some people chase solar eclipses around the world!
I’m thinking about getting eclipse glasses to watch the transit of Venus across the sun in June – an event that won’t occur again in this century!
Did you get to see the eclipse? Will you check out the transit of Venus?
[Photos by me except where otherwise noted.]