did you see it?  yesterday, at 1:18 p.m.?  that’s when it happened here, anyway…

i wasn’t that enthusiastic about the eclipse, really, but yesterday morning as i was driving home from work, my friend jill told me that she had eclipse glasses.  i listened to the radio and somebody was saying that seeing a total eclipse had totally changed their life.  that made me wish i’d driven down to carbondale, where it was going to be total, instead of staying home where it was 96%, i believe.  plus i hadn’t procured any eclipse glasses.

but as i pulled into the garage i thought about jill’s glasses, and maybe she had another pair.  so i called her and she did have an extra pair so i drove right back to her house to get them.

i got home about 11:30, and turned on ABC which was broadcasting the eclipse along the path.  mostly this involved a host yammering about how cool it was, and then the host would stick a microphone in different people’s faces and say, “what do you think?” and the person would say “awesome!”

that got old after a while.  in one of the spots, there were bright lights focused on the host so it wasn’t even very easy to tell that the eclipse was happening.  in other places it did get dark, but there was just too much yelling.

i was also streaming it on my computer, and that was mostly a guy also yammering, endlessly.

kevin and i walked down to the dock at about 12:20.  i looked through the glasses and could see a little sliver out of the sun and that was, indeed, awesome.

i took this at 12:58, as the sky was starting to get a little bit darker.  we could also feel the temperature drop; it had been hot and humid, but we could actually feel the air change.

winnie came down to join us.  there were a few boats bobbing out in the lake.

here’s the sky at 1:08, as it got darker.

mom came over and we took turns passing the glasses back and forth.  even though kevin’s left eye is still bad, he was able to see the eclipse through his right eye.

the crickets started chirping, and eventually we could also hear the cicadas.  a few geese came wandering into the yard, but they didn’t seem that interested in the eclipse.

this is what the yard looked like at 1:13, five minutes before the we had maximum coverage.  it was just so still and peaceful, and a nice breeze was blowing.  when we had first gone down to the dock it was cloudy, but the clouds parted in time.

these pictures can’t do it justice, you just had to see it for yourself.  the light was so interesting – it wasn’t like twilight, really, but it looked like we were in some kind of artificial light, like on a movie set.



this is 1:18, when it was as dark as it was going to be.  through the glasses the sun looked like the tiniest sliver; it was so slight that kevin couldn’t see it at all.

1:19, as the sun started to come back.

1:25, and it was already starting to heat up again.

a good time was had by all.

i was so excited about it that i was going to call jill and thank her for the glasses, but she called me first.  “that was a bust,” she said.  she claimed that it didn’t even get dark at all, and it didn’t get cool, but i think she was expecting to be plunged into total darkness.

she should have been sitting on the dock with us.

my lucky friend bev drove down to the carbondale area and got to see the total eclipse.  she hasn’t said yet whether it changed her life or not.

she’s lucky that she wasn’t actually in the town of carbondale, because she said she’d heard that there, it was cloudy and they only got 10 seconds of darkness.

last night amy and i drove over i-55 and saw that cars were gridlocked as far as we could see, everybody coming back from the eclipse.

that was another great thing about it, just walking down to the dock and watching instead of having to drive and get stuck in traffic.

i will say that the eclipse was about the most exciting part of my august thus far, although i did get to go to the fair earlier in the month and we ended up seeing the group herman’s hermits, and that was also pretty cool.

more later.

ok then,

mrs. approaching fall hughes.