Dramatis persona*

helenhead Helen Chick

I've always wanted a bumper sticker that said "I'm a female, LDS/Mormon, Scout leading, geocaching, piano-playing, bicycling, mathematics educator with a PhD in maths ... and I VOTE"!

I think this makes me a minority group of cardinality 1!

* Since there's only one of me and "personae" is plural (I think), I've gone with dramatis persona.
August 2020
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Telescopic moon

Even before this pandemic drama began, the university bookshop was closing down. One day, as I was walking past, I saw that they were selling reasonably decent telescopes at half their usual prices. After some googling and will-I-won’t-I?, I impetuously bought one. I’ve always wanted to have a telescope, but had never really looked into it seriously, partly because I know how long it takes to find a good night for viewing and then actually find stuff in the sky (one star looks pretty much like another when you’ve only got one in the viewfinder!), and then things drift off the field of view as the earth rotates (it’s as well that the earth does this, but it’s annoying for astronomy!). The cool (and somewhat costly) thing about this particular telescope is that it can set itself up from three bright stars, will go find anything I tell it to, and will track things once I have (well, it has) found them.

It has taken me a while to get the hang of using it efficiently and effectively (the small scope wasn’t well aligned, but I managed to fix that), and I haven’t yet had a chance to have a good look at Saturn and Jupiter (although I have seen them briefly (they’re up in the wee small hours of the morning at the moment, and the timing hasn’t been right weather-wise and sleep-wise and don’t-disturb-the-rest-of-the-household-wise)), but I’m pretty happy with it. I bought an adapter so I can attach my big camera, and once I get better at using everything I might be able to produce some decent photos. In the meantime, here is my (near enough to) first shot with the telescope and camera set up: the full moon in April 2020 (reputedly a supermoon).

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