Gazing to Infinity and Beyond

The Captain is back from Summer Break with some tales to spill. Come and spin a yarn with the Captain. Here’s one about star gazing err moon gazing, err whatever – looking at the sky at night.

It was a clear, black night night with a clear white moon. Warren G was not on the streets, but I had the camera on zoom.

No there were no regulators, but I happened to look out of the window and witnessed a clear sky with a clean view of the moon.

I retreated to the front closet and grabbed the telescope and went outside.

For what seemed like an hour, I sat, stood, leaned, and tried to focus on the moon.

I’ll be honest, I haven’t read the directions to the telescope, so I don’t know which lens is best for what I was trying to accomplish.

Moon image taken from my iPhone.

So I fixed myself behind the telescope, making myself a static target for every mosquito outside.

Finally, I succeeded. At least somewhat.

I found the right combination of twists and lenses and was able to focus in on the moon. I could see texture, contrast, and craters on the moon.

My daughter was having a sleepover. I didn’t want to be the uncool dad that interrupted the fun with something that was somewhat educational, but I couldn’t keep it to myself. I told my daughter first then she told her friends and then all 8 of them were outside looking through the telescope.

My son even abandoned his video games long enough to catch a glimpse of the natural wonder.

Kid looking through telescope at stars.

After all of the children had returned inside, I began the task of trying to capture what I saw through the lens on my phone.

At first it was just a blur. Next it was a brighter light. Finally, I got the full picture, but every time that I attempted to capture it, I would shake the camera or the telescope and the image would be lost.

20 minutes and about 40 mosquito bites later, I found myself with this image.

Image of the moon shot through a telescope with an iPhone.

It made me think about trial and error – and how after 43 years I can still be simply amazed by gazing at the sky. Or how in a matter of years, I’ve gone from watching Buzz Lightyear with my kids to exploring space with them – from the comfort of my front yard.

There’s still so much to explore and discover. On this world and beyond.

Truth be told, that view and experience was worth every mosquito bite. It’s nice having a reminder of how small our existence and worries actually are, but just how far our potential can be. And what better metaphor could I give my kids than a view of the moon.

I hope they reach for that potential. It’s out there – to infinity and beyond.

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