Today’s guest picture shows Blencathra in the Lake District. My brother took the picture when he went for a walk on the hill.
We were due a 95% eclipse of the sun today and I was completely flabbergasted when I woke up and saw some blue sky that made it look as though we might actually witness this great sight. I was less surprised when it clouded over shortly before the start of the event. Such is life, I thought.
Still, I went out into the garden just in case and was very fortunate to find that there was just enough cloud at the crucial time to make it possible to view the sun and take pictures without special equipment. I viewed the sun and took pictures. I have tried to make a little sequence that will show the passage of the moon over the hour and a quarter that I was able to see it. The cloud cover was variable from complete cover to none.
It got so cloudy that I gave up and went in. I popped out later just in case and got one last shot before the clouds covered the whole thing up.
Oddly enough, perhaps because it was quite cloudy, it didn’t get as dark as we thought that it would but the temperature dropped by 2 degrees C during the event.
For those interested in such things, I was using my Nikon D7000 hand held with a 70-300 mm zoom with a neutral density filter. I was shooting on manual settings at 1/8000th with the ISO at 100 and at anything from f35 to f5 depending on the cloud cover. It’s not often that you can get to stand in your own garden and record such a thing so I was grateful for my good fortune.
I got some quite pretty effects purely by chance as the clouds came and went. I have put one of them in here.
When the eclipse had gone, Dropscone arrived bringing treacle scones. He had been cycling round the morning run while the eclipse had been going on and had tried to catch it on his mobile phone but as he has difficulty seeing the screen when he is outside, he hadn’t been very successful. His treacle scones were very successful though.
By twelve o’clock the sun had come out again and I took a walk round the garden. A viola has come to join us.
One chaffinch did arrive at the feeder but looked really shocked to find herself there.
The pond was once again full of frogs but instead of diving for cover as soon as my shadow fell on the water as they usually do, most of them lay still on the surface breathing heavily. Perhaps they had been baffled by the eclipse.
After lunch, Mrs Tootlepedal had a discussion with the painter who is going to help with the redecoration of the front room when the builders have finished their work. There was much talk of shades and dado rails which went past me but when asked for my opinion, I nodded sagely and agreed with everything. It is the best way.
Although the clouds had returned and a bit of a breeze was blowing, the day was still nice enough to tempt Mrs Tootlepedal out for a cycle ride.
I had Pocketcam in my back pocket but I had already taken a lot of pictures and nothing jumped out and said. “Shoot me,” so it stayed in my pocket.
My shoulder seems to be benefiting from the injection yesterday and my knee is in good shape, improving in function and beauty every day so I have little to complain about. However, my regular Friday evening accompanist has gone to New Zealand to see her grandchildren there so I was able to complain about a flute free Friday night.
We fully expected to see a great deal of wailing and gnashing of teeth in the streets and a rush to propitiate the gods when the eclipse happened but the people of Langholm took it in their stride. An important event perhaps but not quite as important as the Common Riding.
I just got a flying bird from our very few visitors but only by a millimetre or so.