Billions of Stars

Billions of Stars




One of the blessings of living in a rural area is the night sky.  Last night with no moon lighting the way, no clouds to block the view and the kind of crystal sharp air that only sparkles in the winter months, Carl Sagan’s famed “billions and billions of stars” were shining bright.  You didn’t even need a flashlight to get around.


And it wasn’t just stars last night.  I lay in bed griping about the busy brain syndrome keeping me awake, and then realized that it offered the perfect opportunity.  Bundling up, I headed out to view the stars in all their brilliance and their starring attraction for the evening – the Geminid meteor shower.


This meteor shower is a bit different from others throughout the year because the shooting stars are often colorful – pink and green and sometimes even blue – because of the materials bouncing and burning on the earth’s atmosphere.   It amazes me that something the size of a grain of sand can produce a flash across a third of the night sky!


While we in North America are privy to about a meteor shower a month, the colorful nature of this one is unusual.  Add to that the fact that we’re often in clouds or a bright full moon at this time of the month, and you understand why watching it was unique.


Okay, so it didn’t solve my insomnia.  Since it was well below freezing, it wasn’t something you could linger outside to enjoy for too long, but Ma Nature made sure it was worthwhile – at least a meteor a minute to enjoy, many small ones but quite a few big ones. And ultimately, it brings a different kind of peace – the kind that makes you grateful to live in a gorgeous area without streetlights or other encumbrances to block the view.


Particularly important when considered in light of the terrible events of today, we each need to find a little something that makes us grateful for our lives and happy with the status quo, even while we might want to alter that reality.


Today, what makes you grateful and thankful in your life?