The Croissant Sun
I’m glad I found my eclipse viewing glasses, hot neon pink tho’ they were (see previous post). I got to see the partial eclipse as did several people that were down at the Rillito waiting for the bats to make their nightly voyage into the dusk. I decided to view the eclipse alone although one is never really alone at this type of event. I have always been a curmudgeon and as I get older I find I have even less tolerance for the human beings I run into. Standing there today, I realized that the type of people who would gather to watch bats fly and/or a partial annular eclipse are closer to the strata of people that I find least objectionable. Solar eclipse gatherings always remind me of the scene from Close Encounters where the people who witnessed the UFOs come together almost out of instinct at the same spot waiting for the ships to return. There were not a lot of people there for the eclipse but there were some. I was one of the few with the appropriate eyewear and soon I was offering and being asked to share the eyewear to view the eclipse by a variety of people ranging from hipsters to young college aged kids smoking uhm, something, to a young married couple and their baby to older folks more my age walking dogs. The reaction was universally a certain amount of awe and surprise at what was occurring so nonchalantly above our heads. I wish that the folks who got a slim taste of an eclipse today can someday experience the magnificence of a total eclipse. It is an experience that puts you in your place so to speak. You realize you are just a small dot on a planet in a solar system of many planets, in one galaxy of many galaxies that constitute the universe. It is an overwhelming machine that we inhabit and although we understand this intellectually viewing the actual workings of that machine is an eye opening step into reality. My photos are horrible as usual. I’m there to enjoy the experience. Documenting it eludes me. This was a better eclipse than I thought it would be. Made me long for more and brought back good memories of past viewings.
Then came the wait for the bats which in their own way were magnificent. I don’t know where that many bats could possibly have been crammed into and under the overpass bridge. They certainly weren’t visible to me when I inspected the underside of the bridge. As night fell, a few came out and then more and more and more. They flew off into the desert sunset until you could see way off in the distance the flock (don’t know what you call a bunch of bats) making its haphazard yet organized way fading far into the twilight while more and still more bats poured out from underneath the bridge. Again, my photos are subpar. It is an experience to enjoy. I do like the odd almost neuron-looking shapes created by too quick bats and very slow shutter speed. Click on the photos to enlarge.