Tag Archives: The Universe

202020

20 May

ADiaryofaPandemicMaster

May 20,  2020

Day 60

Up early on a beautiful, clear and cold morning to return to the doctor. He said to put the lime in the coconut and call him in the morning. Other stops included the main op-shop for the first time in two months. Found some treasures there, including a light fixture for above the washer and dryer for $5. Amazing value to be found if you know what you’re looking for. Found a GoPro knockoff for $5 in a smaller op-shop around the corner, waterproof case and all. Going to hook it up to a motion sensor and see what sort of critter is digging up the leaves along the edge of the walkway to the workshop shipping container.  While Valerie shopped for groceries I used some of the disinfectant spray I’ve been using around town and some paper towels to wash the inside of the windshield of the car. The sun is so low in the northern sky now that no matter what time of the day we’re driving there is constant glare at certain spots on the 309 Road. It was better going home, but I missed some spots so there’s still work to do. Ammonia based window cleaner will be next.

I designed the base for our faux tile floor for the shower last night and began to cut the pieces of timber I’ll need to complete that job. The afternoon passed in a blaze of glory and evening found us firing up the burner to heat water for our showers before a dinner of steamed chicken, mushrooms and potatoes. Watched the movie A Brief Encounter on YouTube and reflected on how fortunate we were to have found each other and to have been in a position to do what the protagonists in that story could not.

 

AWECAMEWESAWWELOVED

 

Tucked Valerie into bed and then checked the day’s numbers. They are encouraging, tantalising, even mesmerising and they are shown below.

 

AMAY20NZCov

 

Zero New cases. 5 Recovered cases. Ratio of recovered cases to confirmed and probable cases is 96.2%. Four Zeroes on the board. 35 Active cases.

 

There is a chance.

There is hope.

There is going to be a respite while a vaccine is developed.

 

The story of our finding this place to build our home is one of  miracle after quiet miracle, each of which reaffirmed our belief that the Universe supports those who make a leap of faith.

 

AUNIV

ATHECLEARESTWAY

 

We could not agree more.

 

AHowyoulive

 

Stay safe and let your thoughts manifest the change you want to see.

 

Goodnight.

 

“Just some galaxy.”

25 Oct

 

So I’m up late in the Keck-1 telescope control room listening to the observers down in Waimea (they observe remotely) talking about oxygen absorption lines of a light source somewhere ‘out there’. The instruments they use have the ability to parse light in amazing detail and the astronomers have to stay on their toes to make sure that the data they’re gathering conforms loosely to their expectations for the target they’re observing. The universe is both vast and empty and crowded at the same time. Light sources can be separated by many thousands of light years but overlap in the field of view. The two observers were trying to discern some semblance of order from chaotic emission lines of an object being imaged and amid all of their speculation and postulation I hear the following:

“What is that object?”

“Just some galaxy.”

They went on sorting out what they were looking at and whether it was the right object and I found myself chuckling (after checking to see that the Polycom video link that connects us was muted). There are one-hundred billion galaxies in the Universe and here were two humans from the planet Earth staring at one of them, puzzling over spectra from light that began its journey untold millions of years ago. The galaxy they were looking at might have as many as ten thousand stars out of a hundred billion which support intelligent life and foster countless civilizations of beings I can only begin to imagine…. 

It’s mind boggling and fantastic and I can’t believe I’m lucky enough to be part of the insane and insatiable curiosity that keeps humans looking skyward and wondering. Sends chills up and down my spine.

“Just some galaxy.”