Mar 4, 2007

Drat! Missed again!!

Why is it that I never get to see the natural spectacles? Chennai is probably one of the dullest places to be if you want to see any natural event like an eclipse. Well, chennai has the Birla planetarium. But inspite of all my purported interest in astronomy, I have never took the pains of going there to witness a celestial event. And there were many, namely the crashing of shoemaker levy onto Jupiter, Mercury appearing against the sun, etc., for which the planetarium made special arrangements for viewing. But for some reason, total eclipses have always eluded chennai. Especially, a few years back I was very dissapointed, when a total solar eclipse was visible in north India, but not in the south. I guess being closer to the tropics puts it a disadvantage for viewing total eclipses(the very reason that makes Sriharikota an ideal place to launch rockets).

So it was with glee I heard today(March 3) that Eastern US will be witnessing a lunar eclipse, a total one at that. I happened to chance upon a picture taken of the eclipse a few minutes back, and immediately ran out to see the spectacle, unmindful of the subzero temperature. The sky was reddish as the description said. But the moon was nowhere to be seen. I guess it was near the horizon. The surrounding buildings were awkwardly tall and blocked the view. And my house was not tall enough to offer me a view over other buildings. In the end, I missed out another total eclipse.
Dont know why, but eclipses always miss me. Rather, the other way around.
Sigh!!! Anyways, I hope to have better luck on August 28.


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