I wrote a short essay, but I'm afraid I was too slow in submitting it. Seems a shame not to share in anyways.
I shall be watching the Total Solar Eclipse from my front step.
I first learned away back in the early nineties, when I was still in my teens, that my hometown of Casper, Wyoming, would be having a total eclipse in 2017. (Astonishing how awfully far off 2017 seemed back then.) I’ve been looking forward with amazement ever since. The partial solar eclipse on Christmas Day back in 2000 provided a splendid opportunity to start collecting eclipse glasses and solar filters. Only a few years ago, I discovered that my house was but a stone’s throw off the very center line of totality’s path. That wonderful revelation has had me even more astounded with anticipation—matched only by the marvel of knowing my five-year-old twins shall have as an early, indelible memory the sight of the Sun going dark in the mid-day sky above their home.
To celebrate the day’s event, we’ve invited family and friends, near and far, to join us for food and drinks and a welcome chair—though I expect few folks will be sitting down. We’ll also have games: horseshoes, cornhole, ladderball, and instead of “pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey,” we’ll award prizes for rounds of “pin-the-Moon-on-the-Sun.” We plan to revel the whole day through. Nevertheless, for two and a half minutes just before noon, my attention shall be focused entirely on the sky. To behold the wonder. To feel the shadow of the heavens cast upon me. And to witness the awe of the universe aligning before my eyes.