Happy Solar Eclipse Day!

Before I kick off my post, just a quick note that I am also blogging at Story Empire today on the topic of “tribes.” Not sure what I mean?  You can check it out here if the mood strikes. 🙂

Having said that, I’ve been looking forward to this day for a while. Yeah, I know it’s Monday but in the U.S. August 21, 2017 is a big deal. Why? Because states and cities lying in a narrow band from the northwest to the southeast are going to experience a total solar eclipse.

As an example, if you live in Hopkinsville, Kentucky you’ve got it made. I picked that location because it’s listed as one of the 10 best viewing areas according to GreatAmericanEclipse.com.

It’s also the location of the Hopkinsville Goblin extraterrestrial incident of 1955. Hmm. That sighting occurred on August 21, 1955. Am I the only one who finds the coincidence in date a little freaky?

Total solar eclipse glowing on sky above wilderness in forest. Amazing scientific natural phenomenon when moon passes between planet earth and sun. Serenity nature background.

If you are in Hopkinsville or anywhere in the cross-country viewing band, consider yourself lucky. My area will only see a partial eclipse with the nearest to totality happening around 2:40 PM. People have been gobbling up viewing glasses wherever they can find them. As far as I know, there are none to be had.

The last time a total solar eclipse was visible from the lower 48 states in the U.S. was in February of 1979. Once again, my area only saw a partial eclipse but I vividly remember making a pin hole viewer. I also had a telescope at the time which was equipped with a sun filter and a white tray for projection. I still remember fiddling with that thing in the front yard. “Sky events” have always been something I’ve found highly intriguing. The Northern Lights are on my bucket list.

My father had a profound interest in astronomy and passed that love onto me. From sitting outside together and watching the stars, to showing me how to use my first telescope, he made sure I appreciated science and the sky. When he was in his twenties, he designed and built a telescope for one of his nephews. This would have been in the 1940s. That telescope remained operational into the 21st Century.

From the early origins of Man, we have looked to the heavens for signs and symbols. In days of old, people lived in fear of an eclipse, many believing the sun was devoured by demons or dragons. Others that the sun and moon waged war. Superstitions ranged from fear of going outside, to an eclipse being harmful to pregnant women, to children who were born during an eclipse turning into mice. In 6th Century B.C., a war between the Medes and Lydians ended abruptly because of an eclipse. The armies on both sides believed the darkening of the sun was a sign the gods were displeased by their fighting. On the more favorable side, Italians believed flowers planted during an eclipse would bloom with brighter colors than natural.

Mondays rarely make it onto my list of favorite days, but this one will go down as being special. Even if haze or clouds make the eclipse less than stellar, I love that people have taken such a keen interest in the sky, and are looking forward to a rare celestial event.

Silhouette of four people on a hillside watching a solar eclipse

Are you in the path of the eclipse? If so, what do you have planned for today? Is the excitement rampant where you are? Most importantly, have you ever experienced a solar eclipse? Let’s celebrate the event in the comments below!

66 thoughts on “Happy Solar Eclipse Day!

  1. Great post, Mae! I must say I’m just as excited as you about the eclipse! I’ve been talking about it but have made no other plans other than to go outside and just be in it! A perfect time to do yoga. I know I will see amazing pictures of it on the internet. I’m not in the total part in California, but my son is in Oregon. The thought did occur to me to take a road trip, but responsibilities took over…We have a telescope that I haven’t learned to use yet, but looking up to the heavens has always been what I like to think a calling! Happy Eclipse!

    Liked by 1 person

    • D. L., I just watched live feed of the total eclipse from Oregon. It was amazing! I hope your son got to experience the actual event (depending on where he’s at there).
      Yoga sounds like a wonderful way to celebrate the eclipse! Enjoy!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I will only see a partial eclipse. I’m sure the local news stations will carry shots of the total eclipse. There are several eclipse parties happening in my area, and schools have early dismissal. It’s great to see so many people interested.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s so exciting that schools have early dismissal and there are eclipse parties. This is already giving me ideas for a novel! And I’ll definitely be checking out the local news tonight. This is so much fun!

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  3. Great post, Mae. Of all the crazy stuff of life, this is an event that sparks imagination and dreams. I’m looking forward to joining the masses in a glimpse. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. We’ll only be able to see 61% coverage in NH, but I wouldn’t miss it. I also love the excitement filtering through the country over the eclipse. It warms my heart to see people banning together in support of a natural event. Happy viewing, Mae!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is great to see people united and positive about something! How fun that an eclipse brings us all together. We’re going to have 75% coverage, just a little over an hour away. Wishing you happy viewing too! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m right in the path of totality. Traffic will probably be terrible here today, but I understand why people are coming in. I’ll be at work during the eclipse, but my boss will let us go out and look. There were no glasses to be had around here, either, until I happened to go to a local restaurant in a little town about 30 minutes from here. They were selling them for $20. I really didn’t want to pay that much, but I had no choice. I shouldn’t have waited until the last minute! I’m pretty excited!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re in the path of totality? Oh, you are sooooo lucky! How amazing that will be. I just watched live feed of totality from Oregon and even viewing it that way was amazing. I think I got the last pair of glasses in my area today. I heard people in Charlottesville (also in totality) are renting out rooms in their houses for $900. One of my co-workers has family there and she said the city is bursting at the seams.

      Happy Eclipse viewing, Lauralynn!

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  6. Our city’s passing out eclipse glasses to kids in school so they can watch the eclipse, and we have a few eclipse parties at malls and the college campus. We never got a pair of glasses–every time we looked, they were sold out, but I’ve been following the eclipse on the horoscopes I read and friends are travelling to nearby cities to see the total eclipse. It’s an event! And I love that. I hope it fills the universe with enough positive energy to last a while:)

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is a great example of positive energy, and I think it’s amazing that special events are taking place and schools are using this as a learning experience. Our library is holding a local event and I’m sure there are a number of parties taking place too. The excitement is contagious!

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  7. Of course the Italians have a myth about it! And a lovely one, at that.

    You know I’m interested in the same sorts of events and mythologies as you. This one is particularly fascinating to me. I didn’t manage to get the glasses, but I’ll be following the coverage on television and possibly risking my phone to get a photo or two. (Here’s hoping it doesn’t get damaged and I don’t go blind!)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, no! Be careful with your phone. I think there are certain methods you have to use to grab photos. You can probably find them on the internet. And yes, we definitely share a love of legends and myths.
      I chuckled over the Italians too. Notice how we put a GOOD spin on an eclipse 🙂

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    • 90% coverage. I’m jealous!!! I’m following on live streams but have another hour before it starts to make an impact here. We’re only expecting 75% but that’s enough to make me jazzed. So cool to know it’s getting dark where you are! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Happy birthday to you, Jan! I think it’s so cool that you have a birthday on a solar eclipse day. Even if it wasn’t noticeable to the naked eye, what an event to remember!

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    • Oh, wow–91%?!?! You were so fortunate, Stanalei. We had some weird diffused light (with about 75-80% coverage) but no darkness. I was amazed by how black it was in those areas that had 100%. Such an event. I’m still soaring on the whole thing. I love sky events!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Yay! Same with us, Joan. In 2024 we’re supposed to have 93% coverage. I was already discussing plans with hubby, LOL.

      I had my glasses today and the 75-80% I saw was amazing. A very cool and memorable event!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I wasn’t particularly excited by the eclipse (have seen others) but a friend of mine who took off on a trip to Bend, Oregon, tp see it in the total zone, piqued my interest. I got some glasses and my husband and I watched it from our deck this afternoon. It was pretty amazing – we saw about a 935 blockage.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oooh, you had a great blockage ratio, and seeing that percentage from your deck must have been pretty amazing (even if–lucky you-you’ve seen others). I hope your friend had an amazing experience too. some of the shots I saw on the news were awe-inspiring! My muse is already dreaming up story plots, LOL!

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  9. We were out visiting a friend but didn’t have glasses to look at the eclipse. From Concord which is about 25 minutes away from us, it was a partial eclipse. Nice post, Mae. 😄🌓🌗🌔🌘🌑

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks! I couldn’t let the day pass without some kind of recognition for an event that resonates so strongly with me. I hope you enjoyed the time with your friend,

      BTW, I’ve been to Concord and loved my visit there. Standing on “the bridge” is something I’ll always remember 🙂

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  10. We had to drive about 90 minutes south to catch the totality. It was amazing, Mae. Something to cross off my bucket list. I only wish it was longer so I could take in more of the sight and absorb all the sensory changes. (Northern lights are still on my list). 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Nice post! Got a quick glimpse of the sky yesterday but unfortunately I wasn’t anywhere near the path of totality. Viewing a total eclipse is definitely on my bucket list now!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hello, Millennial Ghost. Thanks for dropping by and visiting. There’s another eclipse coming in April of 2024. Only seven years away, LOL. Maybe we’ll both have better glimpses then. Seeing a total eclipse is on my bucket list too!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Ahh I love weird history like that! I’m really into reading old newspapers for the sheer purpose of finding strange things like this. 🙂 As you know, I definitely watched the eclipse yesterday and now I’d like to see totality since I saw 99%. I was so close! I also would love to see the Northern Lights as well!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m sooo jealous of that 99%, LOL. I hope you’re able to catch the 1 more percent in 2024 at the next eclipse. I’m hoping 100% is within driving distance of me.

      My husband saw the Northern Lights a number of years ago during a trip to Maine with some buddies. I keep telling him he owes me a trip since that is on my bucket list. 🙂

      I love vintage stuff, including old newspapers and photos. History and oddities together are unbeatable 🙂

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  13. Wish I could’ve seen totality, but alas, we’re nowhere near the path. And bonus: it rained on Monday! I remember the eclipse back in ’79, and like you, I made a pin hole viewer to see it. I remember how cool it was to see the bright circle of the sun and the dark of the moon. There was another eclipse I remember, in the early ’90s I think, we were able to see when we lived in MI. I don’t think it was totality then either, but I do remember it wasn’t raining 🙂

    Oh, man, the Northern Lights are awesome! I’ve seen them a couple times, most notably during an evening flight between the US and London. One side of the plane faced the lights, and I watched them as long as I could. They were mesmerizing!

    I’m hoping to get a chance to see more totality (we would have been able to see about 85% in MN, had the clouds not been in the way!) in 2024, but I suspect MN is too far north for any path to reach us. Maybe it’ll be closer, though!

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  14. I’m only a little over an hour from Hopkinsville, so I had a pretty awesome show on Monday. Temp dropped, wind kicked up, my cat freaked, and the dogs in the neighborhood started howling – you would have loved it! This was a fascinating post.

    Like

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