Thursday, February 22, 2018

Spectacular Super Blue Blood Moon

It was the trifecta of moon watches, and I was able to experience this moon in all its wonders and glory from the patio of the Palm Springs, California home we were staying at. On January 31, I was up at 4 a.m., wrapped in a blanket, steaming coffee in hand, and observed the grand performance. Anyone following this blog knows I enjoy heading outside to watch night turn to the dawn of a new day. I've been able to witness daybreak in many places as we travel, but this heavenly experience is now the best of the best for me.

Leading up to the event, it was hard to miss all of the information about what a Super Blue Blood Moon was; but in case you did, here's the rundown:
  • Super - slightly larger moon than normal
  • Blue - the second full moon of the month
  • Blood - more of a burnt orange total lunar eclipse as Earth passes between the sun and the moon 
While I experienced this celestial display, I noticed a number of shooting stars, was able to see what Orion (my favorite constellation) was up to, could hear the gentle slapping of the nearby palm trees from the light breeze and the momentary squawks from nearby birds as the bright white moonlight turned dark orange (those birds didn't seem to care for that at all), and finally, I could hear the sounds of the city as Palm Springs lazily began to wake up. It was nice to just simply be for hours without thinking about anything else.

From my viewpoint, the moon held the full burnt orange color for about an hour. I wasn't expecting that! I observed this spectacular earth shadow event for over 2 hours. But due to the nearby mountains, I wasn't able to see the bright white of the moon reappear fully. By the time sunshine flashed across the sky, I realized I must have been smiling for hours because my cheeks were sore!

You know, spectacular doesn't even seem like the appropriate word to describe this event, and spectacular isn't a word I use often. Doing a word search of this website, I've never used spectacular in any of my previous 227 posts! We all could use more spectacular in our lives, but it is up to us to get up, get going, and make it happen.


Super blue blood moon photo courtesy of damclark's.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

A Bedtime Story

Remember the fairy tale of the Princess and the Pea? Basically, the best way to know you have a princess on hand is to send her to bed on a stack of mattresses with a pea at the very bottom. If she has a rough night sleeping, you’ve got yourself a princess. You might find it interesting to know that I’m one of those princesses, and I can tell you that a bad night’s sleep is never good for a princess. You might be wondering how I can travel fulltime if I’m that sensitive to mattresses?

Well, there are times when I’m feeling more like Goldilocks of Goldilocks and the Three Bears fame. She tried Papa Bear’s, Mama Bear’s, and Baby Bear’s bed in an attempt to determine what mattress was just right. With no home or bed of my own, I roam from bed to bed in my chosen nomadic lifestyle. The Princess and the Goldilocks in me are questioning this whole travel thing, because many times the beds are definitely not just right, and you cannot fool a princess when it comes to uncomfortable mattresses – no way, no how, never.

I try to make each home as comfortable as possible and that includes the bed, because I know how important sleep is for keeping healthy. So, I flip, turn, and cover the mattress with extra blankets, but it doesn’t always help. If there's more than one bedroom, I try different beds - just like good old Goldilocks. I peruse the reviews of previous occupants for comments regarding the good, the bad, and the ugly of anyplace I might be interested in staying. High on the list are the mattress comments – even though mattress comfort is subjective. But it's a little frustrating if I am going to be staying in a place for weeks when the bed is not just right. I should mention that it’s not always a scary bedtime story for me. There are times when I have extremely comfortable mattresses that are just right.

For now, I’m asking the Princess and the Goldilocks in me to adapt as much as possible and prop herself up with pillows if necessary. I’m dealing with bad mattress back syndrome by doing my best to overcome my aches with stretching, yoga, frozen bags of green peas, and my trusty travel size TENS unit (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation which relieves muscle tension). This traveling lifestyle is not a permanent change, so I keep promising Princess Goldilocks the most perfectly comfortable bed in all the land when she has a home of her own again.

I may be longing for a comfortable mattress, but with this nomadic lifestyle I’m living, I’m finding my way by continually trying to adapt to whatever comes my way, and that includes one mattress at a time. The good news, or should I say the happy ending to this post, I’m usually not at any location for long, so there’s always hope that the next mattress will be juuust right.


Once upon a time photo courtesy of Steve Czajka