Walking before dawn
I woke up early enough that I headed out for my walk a good half-hour before sunrise. I knew that the moon was full, so I turned west as soon as I could to see the setting of that round celestial body. But it wasn't round at all. I could see its fullness - the full circle of its edge - but only a tiny sliver glowed as a full moon should. Could I really have stumbled onto a lunar eclipse?
Surely not - surely I would have known if the moon was going to eclipse this morning. Surely someone I know would have posted about it on FaceBook, at least. I used to pay attention to these things. The phases of the moon and the turning of the seasons used to matter to me a great deal. How could I be surprised by a total lunar eclipse?
I walked only a few blocks west - to Main street where the sky opens up more. Then I turned north for five or six blocks so the moon would stay over my left shoulder. I kept looking to see if clouds would part and reveal the whole. I turned east to walk toward sunrise, but I continually looked back to see if the moon had changed. Slowly more light was revealed. I became convinced that I was witnessing an eclipse, and I cut the walk short and went to the stadium that afforded the best view. The sun was nearly up by that point, and the clouds had begun to gather and obscure the swelling moon. Then it disappeared all together. It was not yet half uncovered when the clouds took it away.
I feel a little like Forrest Gump who stumbled unwittingly into famous, important moments.