Annular Solar Eclipse (金環日食) 2012

May 21, 2012

The moon passed in front of the sun right at the end of Asteroids, Comets, and Meteors.  The forecast was for a perfect annular eclipse as seen from Tōkyō, but the weather forecast for the eastern capital was far from clear.  We elected to spend the night of the 19th in Niigata, and the next morning, Cristina and I set out early to watch the sunrise and hand out glasses to passersby to watch the moon pass in front of our sun.

The kanji for this astronomical event–金環日食–translate quite literally as “a golden ring making a meal of the sun”.  The geometry of our solar system sees our moon dieting on our stellar neighbor.

Eclipse shadow

The eclipse caused the shadows of the leaves to appear as projected crescents on the ground

An adorable older couple came by to look through the classes.  She kept exclaiming, “よかたね〜!”, “yokatane!“, “how wonderful!”

The moon passed away and shadows returned to normal.  How fantastic to see a golden ring making a meal of the sun.

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