Saturday, August 24, 2013

If I Could Capture Just One Meteor

I was out there in the night of August 12, the second night when the well-loved Perseid meteor showers would peak. August 11 turned cloudy later in the night, thus preventing me from viewing the shower. On the 12th, the sky was clear and studded with stars in subdued lights due to the brightness of the night. Our late nights here these days are not totally dark yet.

The moment I stepped out to our back porch that night at past eleven, a fireball suddenly zipped vertically across the sky, its abruptness and swiftness taking me aback. It was followed by another in a couple of minutes. And then another.

These three meteors shooting down in a row got me excited, and so I dashed into the house to fetch my camera and tripod to capture the meteors. After setting up my camera, I waited for my next meteor sighting. And waited, and waited....Nothing came at all. Was the Perseid show already over, just as soon as I took out my camera? Hmm...strange. I couldn't wait anymore. It was already past 12 midnight and I had to go to sleep.

At least, I finally encountered the elusive Perseid meteor showers. Elusive for me in the sense that in the tropics where I came from, August is a rainy month so that we could not see it at all. Here in Sweden, my first three summers had those Perseid nights cloudy. It may not be as spectacular as the Leonid meteor storm that I witnessed in 1998, but I finally had a glimpse of it, through those three meteors.

And I'm happy enough with that. Of course, if I could only photograph just one meteor, it would be a bonus for me.

In the absence of a Perseids photo, I'm posting here instead a late night scene that occured just a few days before the meteor shower peak nights.

It's one of the many marvels of summer nights.