In the middle 50s, I got two great books for Christmas. One was a book of geography and tracing paper whereupon I was to trace every country, river, mountain range, savannah, yada yada and also the Golden Book of Astronomy. I remember the picture of Haley's Comet and also a snatch of the caption that said "it would next appear in 1986". It did. My dad, if he could see anything much at 3 months had the chance to see it twice in his life and it was an event to him; possibly because of his mom's remembrance and partly because he was a curious fellow.
Tonight is the Blood Moon and a total eclipse. Sometime around 8pm where I live, the moon will start to glow reddish (Rayleigh effect). The earth's shadow will spill across the surface and well, you know the rest. If not, I'll loan you my Golden Book of Astronomy if I can find it.
Eclipses were shown in great detail in my Golden Book. I didn't know much about geometry and parallax so a lot of the nuances were lost to me. It did teach me about latitudes and a whole bunch of other things but mostly it taught me to be patient. Astronomy is all about patience.
I bring this up on the morning of a great eclipse, hoping for a clear night, as this is my last blood moon eclipse. The next one is in 2033. I'll be long gone. I don't really remember the last one, sometime in the 1990s perhaps depending of course on where you live. So tonight I don't know if to welcome back a celestial sign or say good by to the last one I'll see.
Maybe things get a little more precious or would be perhaps, if we encountered them like the last time; the last time I'll hear a piece of music, read a book, see an eclipse like this one. I don't know. I really don't but I suspect that it will come to me - that proper way of looking, hearing and seeing - as time draws nigh.