Hello Darkness, my old friend:

Total Solar Eclipse, Poplar Buff Missouri on April 8, 2024

Poplar Bluff, a small town (population est. around 16,000) in South-East of Missouri, was my location of choice to view the total solar eclipse of April 8, 2024. Poplar Bluff High School campus was the spot of a gathering of a mix of locals and visitors from all over the world, according to a report in the Daily American Republic. The reporter that I talked to, misspelled my name, but my presence was noticed. I spoke to many Americans, and they virtually came from all over the country, from California (a film crew shooting a documentary), Iowa, New York and South Dakota (a nice family with father, mother, daughter and granddaughter. On the campus, was large model of eclipse glasses that appeared to be very popular for family photo-shooting to have a tangible remembrance of this solar-eclipse experience. Going into the eclipse towards totality, people were staring in awe through their eclipse-glasses witnessing this once in a lifetime spectacle of nature. Seconds before the totality set in, presence of the light changes into a greenish and almost divine glow, making all viewers to become silent. The music of bands stopped; all activity became tranquil. The moment of totality gave an outburst of excitement, then again, a deep silence set in for slightly more than 4 minutes of darkness that totality was full! All became alive again the moment the first beams of sunlight re-emerged. A young boy dressed in a T-shirt decorated with various phases of a solar eclipse, played around with a delightful expression of contentment on his face played around with friends. A nice family from South Dakota posed in the satisfaction of a memorable moment they will remember for the rest of their lives.

The total solar eclipse of April 8, of 2024 was an experience between hope and fear. Weather forecasts were clouds and occasional rain for most parts of the path of totality in the USA. The prospect of a great disappoint instead of a Great American Eclipse was looming for the millions of viewers. However, on the day of the eclipse, nature was good, and the eclipse could be experienced unhampered by clouds on many locations, especially in the midlands of the USA. Occasional veil clouds did not hamper viewing the eclipse. Booking.com showed that most hotels and motels within the path of totality were fully booked. The path of totality ran over Mexico, Texas to north-eastern parts of the USA and Canada – see Great American Eclipse 2024.

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