Monday, August 28, 2017

Trivia-l Eclipsing/Intersecting Goals

It took a Crossroads sermon on Sunday to tickle my trivia nerve to research the total Eclipse path  of 2017 and 2024 across the United States.  I watched the total eclipse on CNBC Monday August 21 as it traveled across the U.S. and when it was near Ohio, I did glance out the window but had no interest enough to even step outside (at about 2:40pm). 

But when Brian Tome showed the next path of the April 8, 2024 total eclipse and said it would be even closer to Cincinnati, I took notice.  Why not find the perfect blackout location and (if convenient and weather permitting) travel to that location. 

In fact, I can't believe I didn't take the opportunity to blog about this since there was almost constant media and I assume other bloggers creating list after list of statistics and facts on frequency, elapsed time, GPS coordinates etc. 

So belatedly, I will add my trivia to the masses.   First an interesting global map of the 21 century eclipse path - with North America as the 'center of the world" and most important :)

 More fun is wondering where the exact intersection of the 2017 and 2024 perfect viewing location somewhere near the village of Makanda, IN somewhere in the wilds of the Shawnee National Forest. For the real trivia buffs - for the 2017 Eclipse, the pink pin labeled  GD is key for Greatest Duration (2 minutes 40 seconds) and the Green pin labeled GE is Greatest Eclipse (when the axis of the moon's shadow cone passes closest to the earth's center) which was 12 miles northwest of Hopkinsville KY.  We were fortunate that the GD and GE occurred over the mainland USA. Many times it is over the ocean - but this GD and GE was significantly less than the maximum possible (7 1/2 minutes).

Well since I missed going there in 2017 why bother for 2024 when I can chose anyplace along the vertical diagonal red line.  Naturally the research in me found a site to determine where to go - a NASA specific Eclipse Web Site Map.
So Road Trip planned for April 08, 2024 to just east of Indianapolis near Richmond IN. If I wanted either the GD or GE for 2024, I would have to travel to Mexico.
But if I read the chart right I would need near Richmond  at 7:07pm and the total eclipse would last only 2 minutes - quite an investment for the "Bucket List" experience.  On second thought - I'll just enjoy the thought of going and hope to last to August 12, 2045 (age 91).  It's always good to have long term goals.

Friday, August 11, 2017


Today is Day 14 for my good friend M.I. who is fighting like a warrior after a serious bicycle accident and reconstructive surgery from C-3 to C-7 - still at U.C. Medical Center.  Only now do I really begin to know what those letters and numbers stand for.  There are other people in my life that have coped with accidents (falling from ladders, roofs) or have undergone back surgery, but none have shocked me quite like this one.

My own coping mechanism for shock is to search for information, statistics, numbers - in a Spock like logical fashion - and dampen any emotional surge.  Try to avoid the infinite loop of "WHY" that attempts to let the emotional valley of despair be visible.

I saw M.I. and D.I on Saturday - Day 7 and everything from the neck up was normal.  Just like the 17 years of gathering together discussing life, the future, and ..... well some of the insignificant current events (when compared to this event).  My conversation that Saturday afternoon was primarily just that - just insignificant stuff -  in an attempt to avoid any emotional rollercoaster intimacy that grief or uncertainty might uncover around some fear of a future dark corner of relationship unknowns.  Avoid asking about the accident; avoid probing into their emotional privacy; avoid the obvious yearning to tell them both my own feelings of sympathy and compassion.  My thoughts - just be there for them - that should be enough.

Yes - I've reached out to my network asking for information, advice and prayer. I've researched foundations, medical facilities, checked out medical books on SCI (Spinal Cord Injury) Rehabilitation, re-read the Diving Bell and the Butterfly, watched the movie, the list goes on and on.  Each day I read the CaringBridge blog that D.I. so bravely posts and I compose encouraging words of support.  Even prayer dominates my day - specifically for the M.I, D.I. and family. 

When you don't understand ..... with no amount of data available to explain ....only three words remain - Faith, Hope and Love (1 Corinthians 13:13).