|Photo of the eclipse off my television|
Before we had left that morning, I had checked the forecast and it wasn't very good. At home where a 95% eclipse might be seen, it was threatening rain and clouded over and was forecasted to be that way until 45 minutes after the total eclipse. If we went south the the path of totality, it was clear and sunny but a storm was making its way with predicted arrival time of 15 minutes before the start of the total eclipse. To me it seemed like a hopeless situation either way and I warned my daughter that no matter what we decided, we probably weren't going to get a peek at the total eclipse. The weather forecasters were predicting the storm was slowing down meaning arrival and departure times might be later on so we opted to go south to the path of totality. Even if it was cloudy, we still would be able to experience total darkness in the middle of the day.
We stopped at a town on the northern edge of the path of totality to eat an early lunch and look at the latest weather forecast to see if we should head further into the path to increase our chances of a cloudless event. By chance, a friend of mine made contact and it turned out he was only a few blocks away at a house in town and his daughter was a friend of my daughter. So we decided to head over there for a bit and re-evaluate things. Long story shorter, the cloud cover was going to obscure the event for us no matter where we went and we really didn't have enough time to outrun it so we ended up just staying there.
We did get a view of the initial stages of the partial eclipse before the clouds blocked our view so it wasn't for not and we did get to experience 59 seconds of total darkness at 1:12 in the afternoon. It was enough to get all the crickets and frogs to make noise and make the hair on my arms stand up a bit. But all too soon it was over with and we were heading back north through rain. As it turned out, those back home had the clouds thin out enough that they were able to witness the peak of the eclipse (95%) and the back part of the partial eclipse. They also didn't get a drop of rain.
I did tape the eclipse on television so my daughter could still see what it might have looked like in other places. All if not lost however for on April 8, 2024, another total eclipse will pass near our cabin in Arkansas and up through Illinois so we will have another chance at seeing one in our lifetime.
|My view of the eclipse about ten minutes before the total eclipse|