Just so you know, “annulus” means “ring”

Annular eclipse - almost there!

Hello, fellow Earthicans,

On the evening of May 20, 2012, some lucky sky searchers got to see a relatively rare event – an annular solar eclipse.  In my searching for how to explain to my dear mother why this wasn’t a “total solar eclipse” I found this site which does an amazing job, so I will not delve into any such explanations here.

Suffice to say, I was ridiculously excited to see this event.  First of all, before this eclipse I’d never even heard of an annular eclipse…well, ok, maybe I’d heard of it, but it definitely didn’t sink into my brain.  Secondly, I never thought I’d get to see a solar eclipse, because I (clearly erroneously) thought that they would only be visible near the equator, and as such, I doubted I’d ever live so close to the path of one.

So on May 20, giddy with excitement and accompanied by my dear boyfriend, I packed up my eclipse glasses, picnic blanket, and camera, and drove about 2 hours north.  I didn’t have any plans other than to just drive into the path of annularity, and then find a nice spot to plop down and watch.  We found a lovely place called The Olive Pit in Corning, CA, where, among their many other offerings, they have tastings of olives, olive oils, balsamic vinegars, some cheese, craft beer, and wine – it was pretty much heaven. Check it out if you’re ever in the area!

Annular eclipse - almost there!
I took this photo during the eclipse on Sunday, May 20, 2012. It was the best I could do with my super high-tech equipment: a pair of eclipse glasses (which look just like those cardboard 3D glasses) and my trusty Canon Powershot SD 630.

What a pleasant way to spend an evening.  If you ever get the chance to see a solar eclipse, I highly recommend that you do.  Should you choose to take this advice someday, try to remember to get hold of some better equipment than I had.  However, if you just want to watch and not take pictures, don’t forget that you should never look directly at the sun, even during an eclipse.

Keep looking up! (just not at the sun) 🙂

Ms. Disarray


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