So, what did you think of the Eclipse of the Decade? The event that sent people traveling far and wide to get the best possible view of totality, the moon completely covering the sun, creating a sight that can truly only be justified by the naked eye. I don’t know about you, but I had to get in the direct path! I traveled to Nashville, TN for the viewing spectacle.
Nashville is already filled with tourist on a daily basis and they were projecting another 300,000+ people to show up for this phenomenon. Bars, restaurants, and even the Nashville Sounds minor league baseball team were hosting viewing parties all over the city. Rooftops, streets, and lawns were filled with people from all over the world. I made my way over to Nissan Stadium, home of the Tennessee Titans football team.
I arrived at the stadium to find there were plenty of parking spaces available where I wanted view the eclipse. It was still an hour and a half until the viewing began and so I decided to get lunch (not the best idea I’ve ever had). I got back an hour later and every single parking spot was gone and I had to park about half a mile away and walk. As soon as I got to my spot, the viewing had begun.
With the moon covering part of the sun, if you put your viewing glasses on and looked up, you could see a crescent shaped sun in the sky. People all around the downtown area, across the river from the stadium, and people at Nissan Stadium started to cheer for the eclipse. You could hear the people shouting and clapping all over the city. The energy was amazing, and that is one reason so many people chose to flock to the city for this spectacle. As time went on clouds began to cover the sun for minutes at a time. Each time the clouds moved out from in front of the sun, people began to cheer again.
This worried people all around the area I was viewing the eclipse. I had already met someone from New York, China, and Alabama that were all there to see this phenomenon take place. There were people counting down by the minute waiting for totality to occur. When the time came the roaring began again and the moon was fully covering the sun. This produced darkness over the city, and you could even hear the crickets chirping as if it was nighttime.
But…. it only lasted for about 5 seconds before a cloud covered the sun again. The cloud blocked the viewing for about 15 seconds, while everyone held their breath hoping it would quickly return to sight. Once it returned, cameras began to click to everywhere you could see a perfectly round, almost metallic looking, purple, yellow, and white ring shining from behind the moon. At one point there was even a little sparkle off the side of the ring, which the guy from New York captured on his camera. I didn’t know what to expect and really wasn’t going crazy about it all beforehand, but after seeing it, I am so glad I made the trip up to Nashville to observe the totality of the eclipse. It was supposed to last anywhere from one and a half to two and half minutes, but after it was uncovered by the clouds it was only viewable for about another 15 to 20 seconds before the clouds covered it again for the duration of the phenomenon. I will never forget what I saw in such a short a short period of time. It had me in an utter awe…
Funny story to end the day, I met another man from China in Target later that night. He didn’t speak much english at all and pointed down at a coupon for some Twinkie’s. He didn’t know where to find them so I searched, and I couldn’t find them either. They ended up walking off and I kept looking. I finally found the Twinkie’s and carried him a box across the store. When I handed him the box his face lit up and he said, “OH MY, OH MY, THANK YOU, OH MY!!” The whole time he was talking he was bouncing up and down and had the biggest grin on his face. This made my day so I thought I would share, because you never know what could make or break someones day. Something as simple as me handing that man a box of Twinkie’s made him seem like the happiest man in the world.
I would love to hear about where you watched the eclipse and your thoughts!