Monday, August 15, 2005


The bad astronomer was talking about watching the Perseids, a meteor shower that happened on the weekend and provided skywatchers with some really pretty and amazing sights.
It reminded me of my teenage years when we lived at Mullion Creek, a tiny country community about three hours' drive from anywhere exciting. My bedroom was at the front of the house and had a large picture window with a view across the paddocks, past the eponymous creek and all the way to the town 14 miles away, the lights of which were just visible on the horizon. Every night I would lie in my bed under the window and look out at the myriad stars of the Milky Way, all amazingly bright under those dark sky conditions. Some nights I'd see just one shooting star, other nights I'd see quite a few.
Back then I didn't know much about meteors and I knew nothing about meteor showers, so I don't know which showers I saw or which comet's remains they were, but I loved watching anyway! I used to make wishes whenever I saw a meteor... mostly about getting out of Mullion Creek and finding happiness and success in the city.
From my bedroom window these days I am lucky if I see a single star (more likely a planet because it has to be pretty bright to pierce the light pollution in the inner city).
There's not much I miss about my teenage years, or Mullion Creek in general, but seeing shooting stars is one of the experiences I'd like to recapture more often. When I made those wishes about leaving, I didn't really think about everything I'd be leaving behind.

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