The Sun, the Moon, and a cardboard box

The sun and the moon and me (c) CM

So today there was a partial eclipse. I hadn’t heard about it until I went to lunch with a friend, and in her car, she had armed herself with a box with a piece of white paper pasted on one side and a hole cut in the other, over which she had taped aluminum foil and pricked with a pin. This was her eclipse viewing device, she told me. I had heard about people making these things to view eclipses before. I wasn’t sure I wanted to go to the trouble. But around 2pm, as I sat on my couch reading the Sunday Trust, I looked outside and noticed that the light was long and harsh and strange, so I called her and asked if she was watching the eclipse through her box. Was it happening now? She told me I still had time, as the peak of the eclipse was supposed to happen at 2:40pm, so I went and found an old regulator box and made the same device.

It was not that dramatic as I was expecting. I had thought I might see some sort of photographic image coming through the pin–hole onto the white paper. Yes, people, there is a reason I’m not in the sciences. Instead, it was just a new moon shaped sliver of light, which showed the shape of the moon as it passed in front of the sun. I was too afraid to look up at the sun itself. Next time I’ll have to prepare myself ahead of time with properly treated goggles.

I showed the neighbours, and wandered about looking at it from different angles.

I had some poetic thoughts about it all, but in between going back inside to keep working on my current chapter and staying up too late before deciding to post, the eclipse poetry will have to wait for the next eclipse. In the meantime, here are a few of the photos I took of the sliver of light in my box. Note: there is nothing fancy or dramatic about these photos. I did not risk pointing my camera lens or my eyes towards the light. It’s just a recording of my delightful, dorky afternoon wandering around with a box with a hole taped over with tin foil and paper.

Look for the sun, look for the moon, they are there in the light, in the shadow, in the cardboard box.

Eclipse viewing device (c) CM

the sun, the moon, the box, and me.

The sun, the moon, and an evil forest (c) CM

The sun disappears behind the moon and the trees. (c) CM

The sun, the moon, me and a cardboard box (c) CM

Light (c) CM

Light (c) CM

6 responses to “The Sun, the Moon, and a cardboard box

  1. Your adventures were more fun than mine. I had to field questions from my 7 year old and, even with help from Google, came up short on the right explanations!


  2. Ah, but viewing it with a 7 year old sounds much more fun! 🙂


  3. Hello Carmen, Always a delight reading ATUNANINA. In recent times, you often allude to your PHD desertification in most of your writings. From your words, I could read the pain of having to write when time itself is not enough. However, I think that’s what makes us what we are-giving off of ourselves when obviously the conditions warrants otherwise. We, on our part as your audience celebrate every of those piece. Often, they broaden our horizon on issues, and for the most part, it carries an impeccable aura of poignancy, balance and revelation. Keep up the good work! Dan


  4. Dan, Thank you so much for your kind words. I really appreciate the moral support. I think that is what those of us who are writing what sometimes seems like never-ending PhDs need the most. Kindness and moral support. Thank you for reading! Carmen


  5. Such award-winning shots! Lol. Good to know you had fun. One suggestion: could you make these your eclipse viewing gadgets for commercial consumption? I can smell the dollar rain…. Ok,bye!


  6. Hahaha! I know, they’re pretty bad, right? I had to go back and manipulate the first one at the top of the post so that at least it looked a bit interesting. Ah, yes, all the money one could get for a device that takes about 2 minutes to make…. lol. Someday, I’ll borrow somebody’s welding helmet to watch an eclipse properly.


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