Seriously. I’ve just stayed indoors all day. I’d meant to run errands and then that just ended up not happening. It gave me a chance to catch up with some friends who I normally don’t talk to since they’re online while I’m at work, though, and since my last 4 weekends have been fairly eventful.
After coffee last night, we went out to a park right on the Yoshinogawa (River) at Julie’s suggestion, and we all lay on the hood of my car and watched the stars for an hour, maybe more. Julie ended up pulling out the sleeping bag she’d brought in case we stargazed too long on my roof and she needed to spend the night, and we used it as a blanket.
The sky was beautiful. We could see almost from horizon to horizon, and any surrounding lights were few and far between and did not obscure the sky in any way at all. The Leonids really peaked something like 4 years ago, which was the year my family saw around 75 meteors in an hour, but usually it isn’t nearly that common. I counted 7–3 for sure and 4 wisps out of the corner of my eye that I was about 90% sure weren’t just my imagination. On top of that, though, the sky was so clear that we got to see hundreds of stars, far more than I ever could in Atlanta. I finally was able to see the Milky Way for the first time in my life–the slightly hazy, cloudy, star-sprinkled belt of the galactic plane. (It’s nice to be able to use the word “galactic” in a non-science fiction setting for once!)
We finally retreated to my car to warm up, and I drove Julie and Sally home. I’d planned on heading up to our roof, and I knocked on Ashley’s door to tell her…except for one big unforeseen problem. I’d never been up there before, and it turns out that nearly the entire roof has a huge overhang over it, for tenants on the lower floors to go up and hang laundry and whatnot. There was only a small part of the sky that we could see–and there were a lot more street and building lights on than I anticipated. Ashley did come up there a few minutes after I did, though, and we ended up just talking for about a half-hour; since her family’s been here I haven’t seen much of her lately. It was nice getting to catch up.
I had a brief debate with myself (and some others who I bugged on AIM) over whether or not to wake myself up and drive out to Mikamo again to watch more of the meteor shower. I figured I would set my alarm for 3:30 AM and see what happened from there.
Jenn, who was one of the people I’d talked to, actually called at 3 AM my time to wake me up for the meteor shower…I didn’t/couldn’t get myself “with it” enough to get up and answer the phone, even though she let it ring around 20 times. My alarm went off about a half-hour later. I opted for sleep, though, and I don’t regret it. I saw enough in that hour-ish last night to keep me very happy. It’s not often I truly get an occasion to go stargazing. It’s raining today and will be cloudy tomorrow, so that’s it for the Leonids this year–but it was great while it lasted.