I couldn't sleep last night.
Maybe it was the hot chocolate I drank too late in the evening. Maybe it was my churning thoughts about last evening's State of the Union address.
Then again, perhaps it was the moon.
I finally got up around 4:30 this morning. Crept into my office and looked out my ice-caked window. There it was, brilliant, bold, and magnificent. Elegant science in all its tangible clarity. A fleeting triple spectacle called a super blue blood moon. A stunning natural phenomenon whose story was overshadowed by last night's political hype and divisive rhetoric. A phenomenon I'd almost forgotten to watch. (continued below)
In the peaceful dark of early morning, I took out my IPad. Took shot after shot of the dinner plate moon looming outside my office window. Gauzy clouds passed over its face. The reflection of the glass gave it a wavy look. Hardly NASA quality imagery, but I was thrilled to have captured its quiet majesty.
By 5:30, I decided it was time for coffee. Heading downstairs, I checked the view out my kitchen window. The angle was all wrong. So, coffee cup in hand, I tiptoed back upstairs. A pool of lunar light guided me back into my darkened office. Gazing through the window again, I looked up to the sky. Was surprised that in the last 20 minutes or so, the moon's path had shifted. Shrouded in clouds, it appeared to be entering the final phase of its light show. Time, I knew, was running out.
Lifting my IPad again, I took still more photos. Some good, some not so good. But the quality of the images is not what is important to me. It is what they represent. A moment in time. A reminder, that I was present.
When I look back at these photos, many years from now, I hope I'll remember what it felt like today, on the morning after yet another State of the Union address. I hope I'll remember the solitary beauty of the experience. The awe. Certainly not the words from last night's address or its rebuttal. Those will have long faded from my mind. In the intervening years, I expect many more will likely take their place.
In my lifetime, though, there is not likely to be another super blue blood moon.
Note: To learn about the extraordinary rarity of a super blue blood moon, read this wonderful post from a fellow ChicagoNow blogger: Chicago Weather Watch.
Filed under: Travel