Have you ever seen a solar eclipse with the naked eye? I hadn’t. Not until 10 May 2013. Not until Adam told me I was seeing one.
Last week we attended ABF (Asean Blogger Festival) 2013 that was held in Solo from 9-12 May 2013. ABF is a conference for bloggers and social media enthusiasts from all ASEAN countries. It was a big event with almost 300 participants! We were excited to meet that many bloggers since we’re quite new in this blogging world.
Anyway, back to the story. We stayed in Sahid Jaya Hotel, 6th floor, with nice window view showing the town. Late night on 9th May 2013, from twitter, we found out that there was gonna be a partial solar eclipse the next day that can be seen from some parts of Indonesia. Checking the approximate time, we couldn’t find the time for Solo. The closest was Semarang, which could be seen at 5.43 am. Being tired after the long journey that day, we couldn’t be bothered chasing the eclipse and set the alarm for 5.45am (because of the early schedule for the next day!!).
The alarm rang at 5.45 am. I walked to reach my iPad, opened the window and saw the sun hadn’t risen yet. Back to the bed with my iPad, I scrolled the timeline on twitter and saw somebody tweeted, ” Anybody saw the eclipse? Share your photo with us, please.” Ah yes, I forgot about the eclipse. Thinking that we had missed the eclipse, I walked slowly to the window, opened the curtains and saw ‘very normal’ sunrise. The sun was still on the horizon glowing a fiery orange against the moody morning sky.
Since I rarely wake up early to see sunrises, I took my camera and started capturing the scene. At least I’d have some sunrise pictures, I thought. I don’t have a DSLR camera, only a Panasonic TZ30 which has 20x zoom (oh yes, I usually use the zoom to stalk people across the river). So I zoomed in…..zoomed in……zoomed in…and clicked! With some more shots, I showed Adam the pictures. “No eclipse, the sun is also a bit blocked by the cloud.” I said.
Looking at my picture, Adam was shocked and shouted, “That was amazing!” I was still confused. “That’s solar eclipse happening at the moment!” I was still confused, but I went back to the window anyway to take some more shots, finding that the sun had gone a bit higher, so I couldn’t get more zoomed-in pictures.
“I was expecting a ring.”
“Well it depends on the location. In some areas you can see the moon totally blocks the sun so it looks like a ring. But here the moon only partially blocked the sun so it looked like a giant Pac-man.”
I was happy that I ‘accidentally’ took that amazing partial solar eclipse shot. I still couldn’t believe it was that amazing until I shared the picture on twitter and it was retweeted massively all around the world. I got almost 1000 retweets on that picture, thanks to the unrecognized giant Pac-man and ABF2013. Thanks for your appreciation! 🙂