The Wow! Factor
The glasses were hard to get, but my work got a batch and they were going on sale at the employee’s store the Tuesday before the eclipse. I had asked a friend to get me a pair since I’m generally not in the office when the store is open. On Monday a week ago, I was walking by the employee’s store — which is really just a little room at work where they have t-shirts and hats and what not, open a total of two hours a week — and by some odd coincidence, the door was open. The person behind the counter was checking in the recently received batch of eclipse glasses. What a coincidence.
“Are you open? Can I buy them?”
“Yes and yes,” came the reply.
I ended up buying five pairs, one for each person in my family.
We had the glasses. We were ready.
I took some leave from work so I could really focus on the eclipse. I don’t remember ever seeing one, probably because I’d never had the glasses.
The clouds even cooperated, parting before the height of it at around 2:30 p.m. (2:44 p.m. before maximum coverage). We only got about 75-78% coverage, but it didn’t matter. It was such an honor to be able to watch it thanks to my super cool (in a cereal box toy kind of way), super economical ($2 bucks, cheaper than a Starbucks coffee) eclipse glasses.
Yesterday, I stared at the sun for a really long time something that you are never ever supposed to do because of my special glasses. I kept closing my eyes and checking for light trails because I couldn’t believe something so cheap would actually be the real deal. No trails. These things were awesome.
We ooo’d and aaaa’d and called the neighbors over. I couldn’t stop saying “how cool!” The Wow Factor was high.
My one neighbor had made a solar eclipse viewer out of a cereal box.
It didn’t work so well, at least not to the level the eclipse glasses did so we passed the glasses around and enjoyed the show.
The next eclipse is in 2024. With any luck, I can hang on to my glasses until then.