100 Hours - part four
Last night was a different sort of event. It wasn't a public star party, and it wasn't guerrila astronomy either. I had a morning of doing something other than astronomy (shocking, I know), then at lunchtime Pete from Scitech picked me up in the bright red van and we headed up to The Vines in the Swan Valley. Pete and Dempsey were running a session at the Primary Science Conference which is being held up there this weekend, and Rob Hollow from the ATNF was also giving a presentation. The plan was to take up the scopes and do a viewing session for the teachers when it went dark. This meant that between the end of the sessions and dinner, we had nothing to do except clean the eyepieces, and sit in the bar!
The original plan was to set up the scopes somewhere away from floodlights and where the spinklers had been turned off. Of course what happened was that no one working that night actually knew how to turn off the sprinklers so, rather than risk getting the telescopes soaked, we decided to set up just outside the building and put up with the lights instead. Dinner was good, the veggie option was actually tasty, but we skipped dessert and went to set up. Two Dobs and the CPC were about all that would fit where we were, but it was plenty. I'm not sure that all 70 teachers were there, but a lot of them came out to have a look. Rob and I manned the Dobs, pointing at the Jewel Box and the Moon respectively, and Pete did Saturn. By the time we finished packing up it was gone 10.30pm, I hadn't noticed the time until then and I was suprised how late it was - it's true, time flies when you're having fun!
It's been a long two weeks, and I am quite tired now, but I'm happier and more relaxed than I've been for quite a while. It's not quite over yet though. Scitech are off to Busselton tonight for their last 100 Hours star party. I'd really have liked to have gone too, but they're staying overnight and I have a meeting on Monday morning. Instead, I'm going to head up to Kings Park and see the guys from Perth Observatory who have been observing up there every evening since Thursday.