About a month ago, we had a blue moon here in Australia. Blue moons aren’t really that rare, not as rare as the phrase “once in a blue moon” would suggest. Blue moons are when two full moons occur in one calendar month. Blue moons happen once every 2 to 3 years, so they are a quite regular occurrence.
The thing with a blue moon though, is you can see it from anywhere really. I travelled from my front room all the way to the concrete space in front of my garage to take this photograph of our most recent blue moon on August 31 of this year…
The moon though is also involved in a similarly rare event, the total solar eclipse. This is when the moon comes between the sun and the earth and aligns exactly, blocking the sun out completely. This event happened just a few days ago, on Tuesday morning at 6:39 AM.
I think total eclipses are more worthy of the term “once in a blue moon”, because a) they only last a few minutes and b) you need to be in a quite precise location to see them properly.
They don’t happen very often either, the last five times were:
- July 11, 2010
- July 22, 2009
- August 1, 2008
- March 29, 2006
- November 23, 2003
Well, they were the last five times until early morning on November 13 this year when the place to be was Cairns or Port Douglas in Queensland’s far north. A good spot, for example, would have been on Palm Cove beach.
I know, I know, I should have driven up there, but it would have taken me about 21 hours, 42 including getting back.
Doesn’t mean I couldn’t see this eclipse though, and it doesn’t mean that you can’t either. Glory be the beast called YouTube.
I’ve got 2 videos for you on this one, I highly recommend you take the time to watch them, especially the first one. This video pretty much contains two minutes of darkness, but that doesn’t stop it from being breathtaking. So I highly recommend you take four and a half minutes out of your life to watch the latest total solar eclipse as witnessed and recorded by the Telegraph…
Sticking with the Telegraph, here is a timelapse video that goes so fast there is almost no darkness at all; just watch how the clouds almost spoiled this event but miraculously part just in the nick of time…
Nobody knows for sure if the universe is infinite, but we all know it sure is big. And we are just a tiny speck.
The you have it; two “once in a blue moon” events in the space of less than three months here in Australia. See, the sky isn’t always blue.