Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Perigee: so close, yet so far...

Yes, as in the moon on the evening of 19 March. And if you're interested in a rundown of perigee (gee as in gee whiz), check out NASA's Science Cast about Super Perigee Moons here. It's science! As for moon pictures, I didn't get any because I was driving to Tacoma at the time.


Wait. Tacoma?


Yes, Tacoma.


Anyway, I missed the moon as it came over the horizon (the Cascades were in the way--aren't they always?), so it wasn't as impressive as it could have been if, say, I'd been 20 minutes later going over Snoqualmie Pass and had arrived just as the moon came up over Keechelus Lake. That would have been stellar (Oh, almost a pun.).


But I did have a swell perigee moon experience nonetheless. While I tried to fall asleep at Mom's house, a slice of moonlight fell across my face through a gap in the window shade. And you know how moonlight is...all cool and silvery and magical, like the tips of fox tails and fish bellies, muscovite mica and quartz. So dreamy.


Of course, it only took like 6 seconds of moonlight for me to start thinking about olden tymes (time was spelled like that back then), when a scorned widow would be stoned for looking at the moon's reflection in a rain barrel or whatever.  Naturally, this led me to consider the possible consequences of falling asleep with the moonlight on my face, like maybe the Devil would come to take me, and I'd be made to eat the fruit of the netherworld; or I'd wake up with a hair-face and wander the earth subsisting on yarrow and pumpkin rinds; or turn into a raven and land on a stump and be eaten by a wolverine; or birth a wolf-child and be forced to live in a cave somewhere in order to keep the locals from killing said wolf-child. (In these scenarios, my hair was all crazy with leaves and beetles and other forest detritus because that's what I assume happens in these situations. Except probably not to ravens--although, I'm sure I'd contract some nasty bird lice.) But, as it's 2011 and not 1210, I made it through the night without supernatural incident. Lucky me.


Since I brought up the subject of ethereal natural wonders, check out this frozen sap Maya showed me a couple weeks ago. (She always knows where to find the best nature specimens.)



Awesome, right? Don't you kind of want to spread it on toast? I do.

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