Goodnight, Moon

I love to geek out about all things Astronomical (especially because it kind of scares me!)One of my favorite places is the Griffith Observatory– I could listen to the lecture in the Planetarium over and over. There’s this Foucault Pendulum amuses the hell out of me. If you’ve been to the observatory but don’t know what I am talking about, it’s the pendulum that swings from the ceiling of the main rotunda down into a pit that has pegs set up to mark time. Here is an explanation of how it works in terms that I barely understand. The last time I was there, I was peering into the pit, surrounded by a bunch of kids on a field trip. It was me and a group of ten year olds getting excited each time the pendulum almost knocked over a peg (“Ahhhh!”) and then when it finally did (“Yayy! So cool!”).

So this weekend marked an extraordinary lunar event. A Super Moon. How awesome is that, that is is called a Super Moon?! This was supposed to be a full moon that is the closest it has been to the Earth in 18 years.

So shortly after sunset, I headed to the park that is atop the hill where Bastanchury and State College intersect in Fullerton. I was pleased to see a group of people had also gathered there to see it.
Unfortunately for all of us, it was a cloudy night, and so we only had about a 2 minute glimpse of the ginormous orange ball before clouds covered it from sight. Bummer!

Fortunately, other parts of the world had better views, and a friend showed me this picture, over the Parthenon in Greece:

Amazing!

That picture reminds me of one of my all time favorite pieces of music, Clair De Lune by Debussy. I just learned that it is part of a four part suite (thank you again, Wikipedia), and this movement is probably the most recognizable. I think many of you will have heard it before:

The music was inspired by a poem of the same name by Verlaine. I am pretty certain that I once had to recite that poem in a French class. No one should ever have to hear me try to recite a poem in French.

I think that it is one of the most beautiful pieces of music ever. Granted, I don’t know as much as I’d like to about classical music, but this movement makes me feel simultaneously peaceful and imaginative, almost in a child-like way. I suppose that it might be slightly clichéd since it’s translation is “Moonlight,” but I like to listen to it before I go to sleep. My sleep has been plagued by too many bad dreams lately, and so each night before I sleep, I listen to the music, often more than once, to relax and let any negative thoughts fade away before sleep.
I suppose you’re never too old for a lullaby…

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