What a day.
Last Tuesday, I spent a regular old day in Ottawa for work. Did a shoot at CTV, had lunch in the Byward Market and sat in Chapter's reading a book about cupcakes. I flew back on Porter and took a cab home. Then I got up at three in the morning to look at an orange moon.
If anyone in North America, Greenland or Iceland got out of bed at 2:45 am ET like I did on December 21st, they should feel changed. Not the way you would feel if you survived an earthquake or won the lottery or fell off a cliff but...something. You witnessed some planetary alignment that doesn't happen all that often.
From the scribbled bits I can make out of the notes I took half asleep in the dark on my balcony, I recount the following:
If you were standing on the moon, you would see two sunsets.
It looked soft.
An orange glowy light.
Orion was in plain view.
Two shooting stars.
The cats went berserk.
You can see by the blurry, slightly Photoshopped, contrast enhanced shot just how tempted I was to take a photo with my little digital Canon. There are plenty of better pictures all over the internet of that rusty old moon. Namely NASA's website (nasa.gov), which will lead you to Mr. Eclipse (mreclipse.com) where you can learn all kinds of things.
Like how to take a better photo of a lunar eclipse for one. And, safety first...
"One of the great things about lunar eclipses is that they are completely safe to view with the naked eye. No special filters are required to protect your eyes like those used for solar eclipses. You don't even need a telescope to watch the eclipse although a good pair of binoculars will help," says Mr. Eclipse.
Fun for the whole family. And I can vouch for the binocs. Suggesting them is one of the better ideas I've had lately.
So mark your calendars for the next mid morning wake up call. According to Mr. Eclipse, North Americans will have their next opportunity to see a total lunar eclipse on April 15, 2014.
That is of course, if we don't all spill off the side of this planet on December 12, 2012. Space will then take on a whole new meaning.
It already means different things in different circumstances.
Wikipedia defines space - the disambiguation one - as: a three-dimensional framework in which we can sense direction and quantify distances between objects or points.
Personal. In this in between time during the holidays where things slow down, it's a pleasure to ride public transit. So much space! People are friendlier, traffic is lighter, there is less pushing and more parking spaces. Are we simply nicer because we're allowed to have a little more personal space?
There are computers and keyboards. My thumb is resting on the space bar as I type this.
If you're an editor and use Final Cut Pro, the space bar is an important key. It starts and stops your stories.
Music. Over the holidays, I've enjoyed being tucked away in my own space. Futzing and puttering, reading and writing, listening to music and doing puzzles. Turns out Fleetwood Mac's old song Tusk, would be a great soundtrack for an eclipse. Just the beat of it. An instrumental version. There is something base and simple and strong about its rhythm that makes you feel like you are somewhere else. Like how you might feel, for example, staring up at a clear starry sky while a full moon is covered in a shadow and appears to be the colour of sunset.
I'm more of a Battlestar Gallactica fan than a Trekkie and will be finishing up season 4.5 on New Year's. Sweet closure.
Art. Visual, photography, film, dance - all use negative space. I enjoy this. I am a minimalist and generally find things too crowded. I prefer things to be simple, clean, less. Perhaps it's my prairie roots. There is so much space out there you don't know what to do with half of it. The other half is being farmed.
As we approach a new year the days get longer and the earth continues to revolve, we go about our affairs in however much space we've got.
I'm not very scientifically minded but I sure did enjoy looking up at a carrot coloured moon.
What a night.