Monday, April 9, 2012

See... Northern Lights over Ireland


How is that possible, you say? You have a point. Vienna is on quite a flat landsurface so I'd really have to crane my neck in order to see anything beyond the city limits. But that's not what I'm talking about. Earlier this week, the Expedition 30 crew were aboard the International Space Station, 240 miles over the Eastern Atlantic Ocean. That's the distance from Paris to London but obviously vertically up the air. Recently Megan and I went up on this swing carousel that boasted to be the highest in the world at 116m. To be honest, you can run 100m in ten seconds (if you're an Olympic athlete, 30 secs for the rest of us...) so that doesn't sound too high. Lies. Damn our poor perception of distance and height. We were terrified. Proper scared. And of course we forgot there'd be strong wind up there too. Here's a picture Megan took when we were still far away. Shannon was wise and stayed on the ground.

Here's a picture of it in action. Das war total nicht der Hammer! 

Point of the story is that 240 miles is HIGH. I understand how Team Expedition 30 may have felt being so high. Yet they went up for one of the same reasons Megan and I went all "living on the edge of danger". The view. Once we stopped hyperventilating, the view was quite nice. You could see all of Vienna, sites I had never seen before and the hills and vineyards on the outskirts of the city. Lovely lovely lovely. Team Expedition 30 had an unreal view too. Look! It's Ireland and part of the United Kingdom at night-time! I can see Cork! What's that in the background, you ask? Well on the right, it's the sun rising. Over there on the left is none other than the Northern Lights. 


How amazing is that? I think I can see George Clooney in Cobh too! Oh look, apparently there is life in Leitrim.
That certainly beats a view of Vienna anyday. It is one of my ambitions in life to see the Northern Lights. I have no immediate plans to trek with husky dogs and a sled to the far reaches of Northern Canada or Greenland so for the meantime, I'll enjoy this picture for there is no way I am ever repeating that carousel experience.

And Megan, I am doing my FYP, it's killing me but I have 35 pages so far! Woohoo!


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"We are what our thoughts have made us; so take care about what you think. Words are secondary. Thoughts live; they travel far."
Swami Vivekananda


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