Searching for an Eddington Moment
Einstein and Eddington
On May 29, 1919, Arthur Eddington was watching a rainy, cloud filled sky on the remote island of Principe off the west coast of Africa. He had come from England to observe the solar eclipse
This is all a round-about way to bemoan the fact that I had no hedge against bad weather this weekend and despite all my careful planning the sky did not open at just the right moment as I tried to catch Whaleback Light against the rising sun. Since I live about 90 miles from Atlantic coast in the beautiful southwest corner of New Hampshire, I treasure every opportunity to make it to the ocean. I don't have the luxury of returning time and again until the conditions are right. I have to make the best of what nature gives me, truthfully that is a major part of the fun.
The Rye Weekend
Every summer our good friends Tom and Paula become even better
|Whaleback Lighthouse, Portsmouth Harbor|
that Whaleback had to be at 63 degrees from my vantage point to be perfectly aligned. Knowing that I would be crossing the park in the dark, Tom and I scouted the location Saturday afternoon. The park is a lovely wooded oasis away from the bustle of the beaches and is crisscrossed with a web of secluded trails. Once on the beach, I was able to find the spot which placed the lighthouse at 63 degrees. Since I would be returning in the dark the next morning I built a small stone cairn to mark the location. Like Eddington, after the preparations, I could do nothing but wait for the weather. Unlike Eddington, I could return to the cottage on the beach for a wonderful dinner and too much wine.
|Tom Scouting the site|
Photo by Tom Dustin
|Odiorne Point State Park, Rye NH|
Less spooky in daylight
The cool blue light had its own attraction and the rocky shore
|Odiorne Point Shore|
I spent two hours on that peaceful beach and, although I was disappointed about the lack of a spectacular sunrise, the quiet solitude was well worth the trip. I knew that, behind those clouds, the sun was rising and that it would be there for me on another day. Despite the best planning nature doesn't always cooperate, but photography would loose its excitement and challenge if every shoot was an Eddington moment.
|Angry sky over Rye Beach New Hampshire|
A nice oppoertunity for a little HDR