Jan 1, 2010

Blue Moon

Last night I prepared a simple meal of barbeque chicken sammies and fried sweet potato pankcakes. While that was simmering, the JR and I went next door and stole our neighbor's fire pit and fire wood and put it in our own backyard, got a rippin' fire going, set up chairs, fixed plates and drinks and watched the moon sashay its way up into the sky, seemingly skipping from one bank of scudding, silver clouds to the next.

Our neighbors finally came over and as the night fell deeper into the yard, the skies cleared enough to do a bit of star-gazing and enjoy some quiet conversation. Lovely DIL brought a book to read by moonlight, and our son, weary from a long day of fine chef'ing, brought his pipe and the four of us settled into our chairs with a good will and long sighs.

For a short while we broke out some tame fireworks and amused ourselves by just chunking a whole bunch of them into the fire pit. Poor Pepper Dog refused to join us and lay panting and quaking in the bathroom. (She's still exhausted this morning, poor girl.)

Then, wondering at the unfamiliar orientation of our new home and seeking out our favorite stars began in earnest. But between trees and clouds we only managed to spy Orion and The Pleiades and Polaris. So Paul decided to go online with his iPhone and grab an astronomy application. Point the phone at the sky and . . . wow! It's all there: the constellations, stars and planets from your exact location. We had guessed at Mars' red rising in the East, through the barren branches, vying with the gorgeous moon for some attention. But the sky to the south was so bright from ambient light that we wondered at the one bright star until we were informed that it was Sirius, the rest of his pack occluded by the lights and trees.

A few more logs on the fire was enough to unevenly roast our toes while our backs grew chilled, and so we went another round of drinks and then called it a night by 10:00 p.m.

I hope to look back on the last day of the last decade as a sort of hunkering down, a deepening of the Real and True and Beautiful; a special moment and place with family when what was important was to be all those things in the quiet of the looming night.

Yesterday was a dream and tomorrow is still a vision.

Stir the fire. . .

6 comments:

dogette said...

HRD is exhausted and has dark circles under her eyes, too.

Jim - PRS said...

Happy New Year to you and JR and your family.

robinstarfish said...

Life is beautiful. Happy NY, Joan.

Anjin said...

Have a great Twenty-Ten...shit...that sounds like a cheap ass bottle of wine...make that 2010.

I'm all about stirring the fire.

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year!

Do tell us the name of that astronomy app. My DH and son are in an app race. That one would be a real coup as it is so frustrating to look at the sky in SoCal and not be able to identify anything but Orion and occasionally the Little Dipper. (I know - Ursa Minor - but what you learn as a little kid sticks.)

Best wishes to all for a wonderful year - and thank you for that lovely relaxing post.

Lulu

Joan of Argghh! said...

Thanks to all!

Lulu, that app is called SkyGazer. It's totally awesome. You can download an even more awesome app for your home computer at Stellarium. It will blow your mind!