Stories of Totality. Where were you during the solar eclipse?
We all witnessed (or at least lived through) a once in a lifetime event on August 21, 2017, a total solar eclipse. The excitement was hard to escape even outside of the “path of totality” (even in the parking lot at 701 S Lamar).
There was something uncanny about looking towards the sky and seeing something different than normal. Besides looking directly at it with approved glasses, there are many ways you can project the image of the moon eclipsing the sun. To the observer there is something timeless about the experience. Hai IT Director Marc Lamoreaux demonstrates an analog version by projecting the shadow onto white copy paper.
For those of you who just lived through it but didn’t see it, a solar eclipse is when the moon’s path intersects the sun and the earth. The suns rays are blocked by the moon for a period of time usually around 7 minutes, however the entire process takes over an hour as the moon crosses between the sun and earth.
The last one of these that was visible from North America was in 1979. It’s safe to say it has been a while since the last one. This event is completely new to an entire generation. It is clear that people were excited about this and sources are estimating that 12 million people were in the path of totality. It was hard to capture the eclipse directly on camera but the responses were just as glorious.
Thanks to Danielle for bringing the proper eclipse glasses so that we all could see. Analog was cool, but the glasses really took it to the next level.
Thank you to those of you who shared your stories, trips and experiences. Here are a few:
Uchi Austin’s own Abram Shook (not pictured), Felipe Lerner, and Steve Rangel drove to DuQuoin, Illinois to Abram’s dads land that has been in the family over 100 years. The hot tub is more recent, but a great viewing vessel nonetheless.
Jamie Ginther traveled to rural Oregon onto private land (they knew the owner) and watched in the comfort of lawn chairs, a cooler and various party treats.
In Houston, Nichole Doest stepped outside just in time to view the moons path in front of the sun, but the clouds blocked the view. Bummer, but on the bright side, Vitamin D was still absorbed.
We had a wide range of people who experienced the eclipse in different places with different techniques. Hopefully no one tried to look directly without the proper eclipse-viewing glasses. We experienced about 60% of totality in Texas, and for those of you eclipse chasers out there, April 8, 2024 we will experience totality in Texas. See you in 2024!
Check out this video if you would like to follow the “Path of Totality.”