A solar eclipse before the eclipse drought to come!
01 Nov 2022
The partial Solar Eclipse of October 25, 2022, was a rare event, for the eclipse occurred during sunset. As I live in the mountains, the composition of the eclipse photographs becomes interesting thing, as I can include the surrounding mountains and landscape along with the eclipsed sun, instead of putting just the sun in the frame.
You should not watch an eclipse without any eye protection; for that matter, you should not watch the sun with bare eyes regardless of whether it is an eclipse or not. If the eclipse happens in the afternoon, it is very easy to not see the sun as it is above your head.
In the evening, it is a different story — since the sun is directly in front of you, it is hard to not see it! I started finding the protective glasses two days before the eclipse, and could not find any. After rounds of calls with retailers to no avail, I had to find an alternative. It was not seeing the sun at all from my eyes, but through the camera display, all while me hiding behind a tree trunk or wall 😆. I went up a hill the previous day to find the spot and practice the shots 😅. Since it is winter and the monsoon has receded, there is significant haze, making the sun appear red, turning the shots good.
The Eclipse Day
When the eclipse started around 5 PM, a big cloud appeared in front of the sun, blocking its view!! For a moment, it seemed like all the practice I had done was wasted. I got distracted by a group of three Malabar giant squirrels, with one being standstill on the tree. It seems that in the face of the threat, these squirrels become a standstill instead of fleeing the place.
With a zoom lens on, prepared to capture the eclipsed sun, I shot the movements of the squirrels instead; it was the first video I ever edited and published!
When the squirrels were gone, the clouds have been cleared too, and I got to view the magnificent view of the eclipsed sun amidst the mountains through the camera display.
During the sunset, the sun was still eclipsed, and it was a breathtaking view to watch an eclipsed sun setting behind the mountains. Since the sun was so dull, I could watch it with bare eyes.
Until Next Time
The next eclipse is not happening in India anytime soon; we have to wait until 2031. For an annular eclipse, it is much more. For an eclipse with the sunset or sunrise, it is rare! Thus, this eclipse is memorable until the next one, for a long.