The seeing was terrible: darkness barely falls, and the sky is thick with heat, cloud and muck. Nonetheless the new refractor let me peer out.
First there was Venus, dropping into the trees but showing a fattish phase; then Jupiter, which graciously allowed me to watch Europa being occulted behind it; then Saturn, rings wide open, with Titan just visible; and at last Mars, almost at opposition but so low it was just a big orange fuzzball.
I’ve seen them all better; but this is a moment to enjoy seeing them at all.
After significant wrestling with rugs, curtains, windows, tables, books, boxes, bargains, shoes, and incoming parcels, we got to the serious stuff.
This included corporate creativity in order to adjust the fascinator with two pairs of heavy duty pliers and superglue (a treasurable experience)
and discovering that we female rellies from far-flung places had instinctively colour-co-ordinated ourselves.
The view from the back of the portaloos was the best I have ever seen from a lavatory (the other aspects were good too) and strop didn’t seem to break out until later. All good.
Meantime, writing a level 7 assignment with the other foot … yes, that worked. Writing is agony, but here is a keeper (especially since I discovered that St Menas may have won the Battle of El Alamein):
It was lonely without the sky so in a heavily symbolic act … I may have overbought. It came today,
and I have been using the cathedral spire to align the red dot finder. Can’t see the spire? The scope can. In fact it can count each red warning light and the knobs on the cross on top.
But can it see anything else? Naturally, the moon is rising behind a band of high cloud and has turned itself into a gigantic fuzzball. Isn’t astronomy wonderful?