Friday, 20 March 2015

The Great Solar Eclipse of 2015

Today was the big solar eclipse day which, for London, was meant to peak at 9:30am and we'd see 85% of an eclipse. The further north you went the greater the eclipse but I'm happy with 85% which would be suitably impressive for me. So up I get, not quite excited but looking forward to seeing the eclipse and I open the curtains…

The last solar eclipse I saw was in 1999 and it was in the afternoon of a weekday. I remember since a few of us left work and trooped into St James' Park to see it. I've also seen a lunar eclipse way back in February in, I think, 1992 in the night sky over Istanbul.

…Anyway, curtains pulled back and there was the greyest, cloud-infested sky you could hope to avoid on an eclipse day. O well, it might clear up just in time, I hoped. It was quite chilly this morning with breath clouding in the air and I saw the oddest formation of pidgeons on the Green beside the bus stop in the shape of an eclipsed sun, just a sliver showing so I took a photo. Maybe the pidgeons know something us mere humans don't?

Coming out of the tube at Pimlico at 9:30am and it was even gloomier and I noticed the street lights were still on. How odd. I was heading to a meeting on Horseferry Road so I walked along behind Tate Britain with a good view of the sky and, looking around, there was no sign of any gap in the cloud cover so I took a photo anyway with the mutant trees and Peabody housing blocks. That's the best I'll get, I thought, so wandered along to my meeting wondering at the temperature drop and the cold in the air.

Of course, by lunchtime, the clouds had gone and there's a lovely blue sky and warm sun. Typical, isn't it? 

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