I made my dad that DNA Scarf because he’s a microbiologist and spends his time in a lab looking at DNA and other scientific things I don’t really understand. But before he majored in microbiology, he was planning to major in astronomy. He said that it was after he took his first two calculus classes that he decided it should remain a hobby and not a career.
Growing up, he always knew when really exciting, noteworthy celestial things were going to happen. We lived on a block of row homes in Northeast Philadelphia and on the those nights, his telescope would come out and he’d set it up by the postage stamp front lawn (which grew the best urban garden before it was even trendy) and we’d look at the sky. The neighbor kids and adults would come over and we’d take turns checking out the sky. Sometimes it was constellations or shooting stars or other rare happenings. And then we’d move it to the back of the house in the driveway to see if the view was better.
And this continued at their house now and if we’re lucky enough to visit when something good is happening, we check it out. Even when we aren’t visiting, he still reminds us to set a middle of the night alarm for amazing shooting star displays. I can’t say that I’ve actually set the alarm but one summer I was away with Jenn at our friend Jenna’s home at the shore and we stayed up to watch the Perseid meteor shower on the beach.
So when they were here this weekend, he told us we had to look for the Venus Jupiter conjunction right at sundown. This exciting show of the planets is visible without a telescope and they are bright. He researched it online and found pictures and we had our cameras ready to go. The hour or so leading up, it was cloudy, then kind of clear, then cloudier and then completely overcast. We missed it.
Even though they went home, Mike and I were ready tonight and the sky was completely clear so we got some decent shots. We used the Canon PowerShot SD1200 IS and the Nikon D3000. And just like I would expect from my dad, he called just as I was uploading my photos to see how mine came out.
Here are just a few of mine. In my pictures Jupiter is at the top left above the moon and that’s Venus further below.