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Old Tuesday 12th November 2019, 00:07   #21
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Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: London
Posts: 436
I'm not an astro guy at all but keep telling myself next time there is a clear night in the Canary Islands I ought to point the binoculars upwards and have a look around. But the famous observatories there are much higher than most of the places I've visited - above the cloud layer.

In Cape Verde the skies are clearer, and with little light pollution in that neck of the woods, I have on a number of occasions looked up and enjoyed some nice views, albeit with only the Mk I eyeball. This was before binoculars became an everyday part of my life. But the one time that the beauty and immensity of the night sky truly struck me was travelling back to an island in the north of the Maldives after an unsuccessful attempt at finding a fish buoy to the north. The north-bound current took us a good way further out than I had thought, so by nightfall we were still quite a way from landfall. It was a clear night and as I looked up I could see what seemed like countless clusters of stars across the sky, but unfortunately I was in little mood to enjoy what I did realize was an awe-inspiring view, being more concerned about toting up how much water we had and so on... Only after the transmission tower we were using as a landmark finally appeared did I begin to appreciate what I was seeing - by far the best view of the stars I have ever seen or will probably ever see.

I swore that night I'd learn the rudiments of celestial navigation, but haven't yet - something I really ought to put right.
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