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USAF

Red Giant

Posted on 2011.11.27 at 14:50
Current Location: 67114
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I dreamed I was in Colorado at the Air Force academy with Bill whom I'd escorted because he was being honored there. As we have become accustomed, we were in a palatial suite in an on-base hotel (billeting) but I decided to leave my slumbering wife to watch the sunrise in Colorado Springs as I heard it was a sight to behold.

I sat outside the window at the smoking area, which was on an elevated fire escape and the sky started to lighten with a deep, rich red overtone. I dropped down and walked across the multi-layered terraces until I was near a berm where many students had gathered to watch the sunrise, just standing there like the angels in City of Angels, listening.

Because the sun was rising above a mountain ridge I turned around to watch the sky in the opposite direction. It was cloudy and ruby-red grapefruit colored. The sun rose and I could hear a symphony of color and sound as the clouds in the opposite sky deepened and became more defined. The sun rose further and I finally turned around to face it. It had cleared half the ridge - it was a brilliant red and I could see the plasma filaments swirling around the coronasphere and the enormous red flames of prominences licking off the surface. It was a magnificent swirling, active ball of red with white sunspots which seemed to ebb and tide while the sun worked loose its earthly moorings and rose.

Red sparks like firecrackers or mischievous, errant fairies popped around us, being fueled by the rising sun. The sky had not become any brighter despite its slow, almost gravity-defying ascent, which allowed for the harmless, magical mini-suns which blossomed and popped around us like bubbles with the reflections of the sun itself on their smooth, oily surface to bee seen in a balance of perfect contrast.

Then the meteors came. Enormous slabs and chucks of rock flowing past us, some in slow-motion, others at amazing speed. I started to get nervous, but those around me who watched the sunrise every morning seemed unconcerned, so I stood still and watched in amazement. The rocks, being hurled from the awesome power and glory of the red sun crashed deafeningly but harmlessly somewhere behind us and with a final, rousing fanfare of the unseen symphony, the sun itself burst forth from the horizon of the ridge and filled they sky with red light!

Comments:


Michelle1963
michelle1963 at 2011-11-27 20:56 (UTC) (Link)
Red ~ energy, vibrancy, anger ~ coupled with an end of the world scenario in which you remain unscathed.
ehowton
ehowton at 2011-11-27 21:04 (UTC) (Link)
Presumably, the meteor shower was a daily occurrence.
pcofwildthings
pcofwildthings at 2011-11-28 03:53 (UTC) (Link)
You do know what this means, don't you? You will go blind!

Nah, just joshing.

Well, holy shit, what a spectacle, huh? Aren't you glad you dragged your butt out of bed and showed up for that one?

There is a whole lot of red going on (excitement? danger?), it seems, as Michelle pointed out. I am also struck by two things (fortunately neither of them meteors): First, you turn to view the sky in the opposite direction. It's like, okay, maybe you kind of know what a sunrise looks like and this day might dawn like any other, but what about back there? How does the sky compare in the opposite direction, knowing it directly relates to the sunrise happening in the other?

Also that the meteors crash in the background. You aren't looking back to see that, but you can hear them crash deafeningly but harmlessly. At this point, you are focused on what is unfolding in front of you, just breaking over the horizon. Awesome and powerful stuff.
ehowton
ehowton at 2011-11-28 21:36 (UTC) (Link)
It was indeed a spectacular performance, one I am not soon to forget. I was, and still remain, filled with wonder.

How does the sky compare in the opposite direction, knowing it directly relates to the sunrise happening in the other?

I think perhaps I wanted to take in everything it had to offer, and wanted to see the rub-red grapefruit color illuminate the thick clouds opposite the sunrise - something which was unfamiliar to me. It was cloudless to the East, but far more spectacular once I turned my attention back to it.

Jobu
jobu121 at 2011-11-29 16:29 (UTC) (Link)
Throwing my thrusters into full speed, just short of light speed. The craft shakes and shutters as I push the the throttle forward. I feel my jaw clenching tight as I fight the gravitational pull of the Red Giant wishing that it was a Red Dwarf or at least an episode of Red Dwarf. LOL
ehowton
ehowton at 2011-11-29 16:44 (UTC) (Link)
And sometimes you have to eject the core and shoot it with photon torpedoes in hopes the blast will throw you clear of the gravitational pull!

Welcome back - hope you had a MAGNIFICENT T-Day :P
Jobu
jobu121 at 2011-11-29 18:22 (UTC) (Link)
Or sling shot around it to end up in 1986...

Thanks brother, it was great Turkey day and of course as every year I ate more than I should :)
Hope your T Day was great too....
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