Did I Miss Something?

The school gave the kids the day off as did most schools in Bangalore and probably India. A solar eclipse. I couldn’t believe it when I saw the email from the Director of Administration:

“Dear Parents,
This is to inform you that Friday 15th January will be a holiday on account of high intensity Solar Eclipse which is almost day long. We deem it prudent to play it safe and avoid the harmful physical effects of the eclipse to the naked eye ( if directed towards the sun during eclipse).”

In Bangalore, I read that the eclipse would start at 11:15, max at 1:23 and finish at 3:11. I thought that with all the fuss the moon would almost cover the sun making it noticeably dark. I watched for it all day, in fact I probably looked at the sun far too much. The sun was intensely bright – all day! Not a sign of the eclipse, no darkening of the skies from my vantage point at all.

The Indian people are quite superstitious about eclipses and believe that many negative things occur due to an eclipse. In fact many child birth defects such as cleft lip are blamed on an eclipse when it occurs while a child is in utero.Today, I have heard that many stores and temples were closed during the hours of the (supposed) eclipse, and the roads were clear of traffic.

Well, the kids got the day off school and we got to sleep in. We are disappointed not to have seen the solar eclipse – maybe we’ll have better luck in 2020 when the next one is supposed to occur.


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