Friday 21 October 2011

Light Box...Yuk! Light Bucket...Wow!

I haven't found the time to blog recently and haven't read many either, so when I tried to open a photo in one the other day I was shocked to find that they now open in a horrible format called Lightbox. Even if you do find it aesthetically pleasing  ( I don't, you may have noticed) its main drawback is that when a photo is opened (clicked on) it just appears the same size, which is of little use if the image is meant to be viewed larger.  The good news is it can now be disabled in the settings menu. I've done mine, which would be useful if I ever posted anything!

While I'm ranting here's another thing to rant about, the continued despoiling of  my beloved Seaton,  once a backwater extraordinare! Yes, it was a bit run down but that's what gave it its charm and kept it quiet. Now the once peaceful birding sites along the river valley are major 'leisure' honey-pots and the town centre is being swallowed up under the monstrosity which is the new Tesco 'Eco-store'  whatever that is!? They have more lights in the new carpark than the average airport. Today I was very saddened indeed to see that yet more premeditated dendrocide is on the cards.

Here's the proposed victim. It beggars belief why when Harbour Road is about 95% tree free they should decide to stick a zebra crossing here. This tree is a lovely flowering cherry which used to really brighten up the place in the spring. It's also the favourite singing perch of a local blackbird. Why a crossing here anyway, nowhere near the new store? One side of the road's houses and on the other side Harcombe Trailer Centre, a few houses and a Bradfords Builder's merchants. Obviously of  the greatest attraction to pedestrians! Don't know what the grey pole in the foreground is going to be yet, it's wired for electrics, it's right opposite our house, ooh, I can't wait to find out.

On a brighter note I thoroughly enjoyed a patch tick yesterday morning, a Richard's Pipit in fields near to Beer Cemetery. I'd seen one on the deck a couple of years ago on Bryher but hadn't heard one call until yesterday, so now I know what to listen out for. I find you can never really get to grips with a bird's call until you've actually witnessed it coming from the bird itself, if you know what I mean.

 A Richard's Pipit is in there somewhere to the left of Gav. 
You should be able to enlarge this if I've successfully disabled Lightbox.

I was disappointed not to be able to go to the Scillies again this year because I couldn't get the week I wanted off work. To take my mind off it a bit I took the money it would have cost me and bought this.

I might be able to spot the odd Eagle out at sea with this!
It's an 8" Newtonian  reflector on a Dobsonian base also known as a Dob or a 'light bucket'  for obvious reasons!

Twenty or so years ago I was really keen on astronomy, I had a really crappy little scope back then and could only dream of getting something decent. Scopes were very, very expensive. I was pleasantly surprised when I discovered just how affordable they are these days, easily cheaper  than spending a week sleeping rough on the Scillies!

The best thing about astronomy is that the vast majority of the things which you might want to see aren't ever going anywhere and the only limiting factor in seeing them is how long you can live for! :-( The time and distances involved are simply mind-blowing!

Jupiter's been showing well recently and nearing opposition on October 29th meaning it's only a mere 369 million miles from earth. Close enough to digiscope it I'd say.

With three of the four largest moons showing

I was amazed how much detail I could see at 200x.

Crop of above photo.

1 comment:

Gavin Haig said...

Thanks for the tip about lightbox - I'd wondered what was going on! Even with lightbox enabled you can still view photos full size. Right-click on the lightbox pic and choose 'view image' (or something like that) and hey presto. Much better without though, I agree.