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Kind of a Letdown

By Staff | Aug 31, 2017

For well over a month, we’ve been hearing about the Great American Eclipse of 2017 and in the last couple of weeks it’s been talked about several times a day on television. I know I was excited to think that I would have a chance to see even a 90 percent solar eclipse because who knows w\hat tomorrow will bring for any of us.

I’ve written an editorial talking about they way ancient peoples viewed an eclipse and I wrote an article going into some slight detail what we could expect to see happen in our area. So, you could say I was eager to view a partial eclipse, especially one so close to the totality.

I went to Lost Island Lake north of Ruthven to view the eclipse with close to 30 people maybe a few more. When the day started out sunny, I thought we had a decent opportunity to view this spectacular event of nature.

Unfortunately for us here in northwest Iowa and elsewhere, Mother Nature had a different idea of what the day should bring. Rains that we had been asking for the entire month of July decided to make an appearance on the one day an event could not be rescheduled. In fact, we all had a good laugh about some questions posed on the Internet about rescheduling the eclipse for kids to view in school. Sometimes people just don’t think things through and I’ve done it myself.

Anyway, with the cloudy skies, lightening and rain, we were lucky to even notice a change. Although the solar eclipse itself was not visible, there were noticeable changes around us in nature. At about one o’clock, a person could visibly see that the skies were getting darker, and I don’t mean just because of the cloud cover. There were differences in the sounds also. You know that short time at dusk when the daytime animals get quite and the nocturnal animals haven’t quite began moving; it was similar. Not complete silence; but one could definitely distinguish a change in animal sounds. The temperature also changed. It got cooler as it normally does at dusk; but somehow, I wonder if that was cloud cover and the wind. The wind actually got stronger.

Yes, if feel slighted by Mother Nature and a little jealous of those people who had the chance to witness even a partial eclipse; yet, I also feel fortunate to have been able to say that I was a part of the Great American Eclipse and to be able to share what I felt and observed simply in the natural world around me. I may never get the opportunity to view another partials eclipse like the one we should have been able to witness on August 21, but I can still say that I was a part of something spectacularly wonderful and I am glad I was able to experience the day with the other people who were at Lost Island Lake.