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Aug 21, 2017 09:21PM
So didja get to see any of the eclipse? I woke up stiff & sore and had to cancel my 10:30 am training session, but I figured I could salvage the day by seeing as much of it as I could, both to peak (87.6%) here and totality across the country. Watched the end of the Madras, OR portion on my iPad via NASA’s livestream cam. Came downstairs to make my paper plate pinhole rig…and there on the coffee table was a pair of eclipse glasses! Turns out Gordy had ordered a pair two weeks ago (wish I’d known, or I’d have asked him to order me one two). So I sort of “rode herd” on it till he came downstairs about 12:30 pm. By then it was about 50%. There were two spots on my deck where I could peer through the trees and see it, but clouds kept rolling in. (Almost considered taking the paper plates and binoculars out to Broadway, where there was an unobstructed sky, but I’m in my housedress and braless, the sight of which would cause more impressionable eyes to go blind than would have staring at the sun without proper glasses). I kept darting inside to catch each totality on TV in the den.
The less obstructed spot on the deck provided me a great view—clouds permitting, because it was intermittently overcast without a speck of blue in the sky. At one point (about 70%), I held the pinhole plate “just so,” and it and the lattice of locust and elm tree leaves projected about a dozen identical little crescents on the plate. Unfortunately, I have only two hands, and the clouds and trees were too mercurial for me to have set up a tripod, so no pix for you. Gordy had come downstairs by then, and we were passing the glasses back and forth. Just as it hit almost 80%, a thick gray cloud rolled smack dab over it, and that was all she wrote. It got a bit darker, as if very late afternoon before the start of sunset, the wind kicked up, and the temperature dropped about 5 degrees, just below 80F—despite the humidity, it felt downright comfortable. (BTW, the binoculars, no matter how sharply focused for max distance, were too diffuse to project anything).
I’m pretty happy—this was the greatest extent of a solar eclipse I’d ever seen with my own eyes; and the first time was able to track the totality via TV and the NASA-cam. Back when I was a kid in Brooklyn, in the early 60s (or was it late 50s, I forget—I just remember my dad talking about “smoked glasses” and we made shoebox viewers), we could barely see a bite taken out of the sun; and in 1979, from the courtyard of our apt. building, not much more.
But I feel for the folks in Carbondale & Nashville (TN, not IL—though the latter got about the same view as Carbondale). Carbondale was supposed to be the “total eclipse capital of the world,” because it had the longest period of totality on any landmass. People filled Saluki stadium on the SIU campus, many paying north of $10K for skyboxes. But despite mostly sunny (and hot—95F—at one point, sending dozens of people in the stands to the infirmary) skies, there was a huge dark gray cloud that obstructed the run-up to and all but the last 3 seconds of totality. Glad I hadn’t decided to drive down to Sparta.
If I make it to 2024, here in Chicago we will get nearly 93% at peak, and Carbondale will once again be ground zero. So beginning in 2022 I will start making reservations for either a hotel room or campsite. (Sparta will be too far NW to be in the totality belt).
Diagnosed at 64 on routine annual mammo, no lump. OncotypeDX 16. I cried because I had no shoes...but then again, I won’t get blisters....
9/9/2015, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
9/23/2015 Lumpectomy: Right
11/2/2015 3DCRT: Breast
12/31/2015 Femara (letrozole)