Eclipse 2017

IMG_4024This is the first eclipse I’ve seen since 1980. I’d just arrived in Delhi, and the family I was staying with refused to let me go out of the house. “You’ll get sick,” they said.

Today’s eclipse was a party. People started gathering in Tom McCall Waterfront Park quite early; as Alan and I walked over the Hawthorne Bridge into downtown, we could see clusters of people settled down with bright blankets, paper coffee cups and white pastry bags in hand.

We headed out of the office about 9:30, and parked ourselves at the railing above the river. It was a bright, bright morning; sharp light glancing off wavelets made it hard to look directly at the river.

Looking through eclipse glasses confined the world to a dark screen and a bright sun, with the curve of the dark moon inching across it. Remove the glasses, and again see the world: river, the geese, the gulls, the people all around us: families, couples, office workers, chatting, laughing, exclaiming.


There was lots of tweeting going on, of course.

Here’s one from my friend Rachel Kelly.

Screen Shot 2017-08-21 at 9.53.44 pm

I liked seeing how the spaces between tree leaves became little pinhole cameras.

Screen Shot 2017-08-21 at 9.54.53 pm

And then there’s this lovely colander effect…a Star of David made of little eclipsing suns.

Screen Shot 2017-08-21 at 9.55.56 pm

I wonder when — and where — I’ll see my next eclipse.

3 thoughts on “Eclipse 2017

  1. Bill Moss August 31, 2017 / 4:34 am

    The images seen through apertures formed by leaves (or collanders) is called the shadow effect. It’s been recognized for centuries.


  2. RK September 26, 2017 / 5:17 am

    Oh my goodness I am so honored that you put my tweet up on the eclipse. Friends and I went down to Cove Creek Campground, east of Salem. I thought it would be… well, I didn’t think it would be what it was, which was truly incredible. I still haven’t seen any photos that capture the refraction of beautiful white light around the moon during the totality – they all look firey, rather than, I don’t know, holy, and transparent – the light appears opaque in all the photos I’ve seen. It was, as they’ve all said, a once in a lifetime experience.


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