Yeah, the title is cheesy, but a solar eclipse is also a surprisingly emotional event. Last Tuesday (July 2nd), my coworkers and I (and another friend) watched as the entire city of La Serena, Chile erupted in cheers when the moon blocked out the sun for 2 minutes and 4 seconds.

It’s a strange thing — the world becomes dark and cold, animals emphatically voice their confusion, and shadows look just plain weird. In the city of La Serena, the event had an incredibly unifying effect: everyone was talking incessantly about the eclipse, standing in crowded plazas, overcoming language barriers, and bonding over stories. On occasions like this I can understand why religion was such a powerful thing in the olden days before people understood the mechanisms behind various astronomical events. It’s a little sobering to realize how much we depend on the sun, especially when it appears to not be in the sky at a time it should definitely be there. And eclipses (eclipsi?) are also just SO FREAKIN COOL to witness in person.

Jazzed in the run-up to the eclipse
Fun trinket from the city market
Artsy coworker being artsy
Trying to capture the weirdness of the shadows just before totality. Crescent-shaped shadows from a crescent-shaped sun make sense in theory but I had never thought about it before, much like many other things in life
There’s a crescent sun up in them there clouds
Fun photo of my coworker taking a photo of the eclipse
He nailed it
Post-eclipse reemergence of the sun (and warmth) into the world

I wasn’t on the summit for the event, but my boss was (hence the first picture in this post), and he created a super fun time-lapse of the eclipse over the observatory.

Apparently there’s another one in Southern Chile next year, and I’m seriously considering making the trek, especially if I’m living in Chile at the time. Nature is wonderful and mysterious and powerful and compelling. Hence why I love the mountains.