The Stars Were Out Tonight

My neighbour reminded me that the Perseid meteor shower was on tonight, so I grabbed a blanket and pillow and went out and lay on the deck for a view.

The air feels like August – a bit of a chill.  Strong summer breezes rustled through the trees.  The milky way was out, no trace of a moon.  A good night to see meteors here on the Peninsula.

The planes to Pearson from the west were tracking in way out over the Bay, low on the horizon.  A few satellites slowly passed over.  A bat flew silently over my head, no more than 3 feet away.  And the stars – they fell.  I saw about 20 shooting stars in about 40 minutes. No big ones like you sometimes see, with a tail that crosses the sky.  But lots of little flashes.

I used to run the Leadership Training program for Celtic Sports and Arts Camp and we took the kids to Rush Cove for a sleepover.  Rush Cove has some rock shelves right by the Bay, and though we took tents, we almost never used them.  Better to sleep under the stars.  Kids from the city don’t see the stars much.  Sometimes we were there during the Perseid shower.

Of course, I have to wear glasses to see the stars now.  And my back gets sore lying on the ground.  But the wonder of the stars never ends.
The Bruce Peninsula has declared itself a Dark Sky community.  It was basically a resolution by the Municipal Council.  They have replaced some of the worst offending street lights, and BPEG has worked hard on public education, to encourage residents to choose outdoor lighting with care.  The Peninsula is one of 3 places left in southern Ontario that still has dark skies.  The other two are Manitoulin Island, and Algonquin Park.  It is helpful to be surrounded by the Great Lakes.

The milky way, shooting stars, and cool breezes.  It doesn’t get any better than that.

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