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Thursday, November 26, 2009

First Albatross

Oh wonder of the Universe - can there be anything so lovely anywhere between here and Squornshellous Zeta? I think it's an Atlantic Yellow Nosed albatross - black eyes, grey head, yellow line on beak, white rump, grey uppers and white underparts with black leading edges underwing. The definition and depth of colour of its markings seem closer to the Bullers which lives in the Pacific. All depends on yellow lines on the beak and subtle differences in plumage - I have some reasonable photos but the beak is indistinct, unfortunately but I don't think there's a second yellow line under the beak. Anyway, a joy to behold and I do hope that if life has evolved amongst any of the galaxies that have been around for the last 13 billion years or so, Albatrosses are part of it. Perhaps Herschel will tell us.

And we just crossed 30 S. A bunch of opportunities to listen to Vogon poetry and mother-in-law jokes coming up as we sit with our favourite medical consultant - there's the Greenwich meridian about a day away and 1000 to go in about 70 miles. Then we will pass Sydney just before we get to CT and maybe even Wollonging if we aim past it to beat the wind and current. Plus our albatross. Yay and wooohooo.

Pete saw a ship! So much excitement in a day - I am faint and trembling with whelm.

The moon has just gone down in the west and the night sky has come to life - all those potential albatrosses out there in the universal boonies - Berrimilla's own intimate 14 billion year slice of space-time. Gravity is in the eye of the beholder - s/he who first drew an outline that linked the stars into constellations. Orion's belt now satisfactorily defies its northern hemisphere creator and dangles upwards - Sirius, Castor and Pollux, Procyon and the rest of the mob in attendance and the Pleiades nebulating happily. I'd love to have a stable platform and a telescope out hers! Space is really really big and there's so much stuff to look at! Fred Watson, my favourite astronomer, told me there's a red giant out there with a diameter larger that our Solar system. Coo! Makes poor old Betelgeuese look like a dried lentil.

Carol, thanks - we'll do our best - these systems give us lots of cloud cover so iffy at best.

Scott - no chance we'll make Hobart for the post S2H shindig - most likely end January. Where are you these days?

Enough already. This is going via iridium.