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8:41pm on Tuesday, 30th September, 2008:



In 1999 we went to see the solar eclipse in Cornwall. The place we chose to observe from was the northern cliff at Perranporth, which had a grandstand view of a sky containing no blue sky whatsoever. Pretty well all of Cornwall was the same: no view of the moon, and no view of the sun on its way to hide behind it. I was completely resigned to missing the one total eclipse due to occur in the UK in my lifetime.

Then, my elder daughter did some kind of WHMMMMMMMMM IZAAH thing, and seconds later the clouds cleared. The sun appeared, close to the moon, and the full transit was visible without obstruction or interruption. The rest of the sky was grey, but not the bit where all the action was happening — that was completely cloud-free.

Since then, I've joked that my daughter must have special powers over the weather.

"Joked", yes... Here's today's weather forecast for England from the Daily Mirror:

Even those of you who don't know much about UK geography will probably be able to make a stab at where Bristol is on that...

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Copyright © 2008 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).