Last nights effort to capture the ‘Eta Aquarids’ meteor shower above Mollymook
Click on the images to enlarge
Wikipedia records : A meteor shower is a celestial event in which a number of meteors are observed to radiate, or originate, from one point in the night sky. These meteors are caused by streams of cosmic debris called meteoroids entering Earth’s atmosphere at extremely high speeds on parallel trajectories.
The Eta Aquarids meteor shower peaked on the nights of April 4 and 5! The spectacle is brought to us as the planet orbits through the path of debris left behind by Halley’s comet! The meteor shower – shooting stars, look like stars that quickly shoot across the sky, but they are not stars. A shooting star is really a small piece of rock or dust that hits Earth’s atmosphere from space. It moves so fast that it heats up and glows as it moves through the atmosphere.
(Most of the above images were shot between 4.00 am and 4.30 am this morning. You just sit and sit and then you will see some. Later after the 5.30 am news someone rang in and saw a spectacular display just before 5.30 am. So you have to be patient)
Poem: Written in memory of Iron-man Dean Mercer
Heats, quarters and semi’s, by athletes tuned so fine,
The final sixteen are on the starting line.
From all over Australia they came,
For a chance at glory and Ironman fame.
Years of training their course is set,
The odds have been laid, you bet.
The silence is broken by the starter’s gun,
This is it, all hoping to be number one.
He is headed into the surf,
Unlike a jockey, the water’s his turf.
The draw has been made, Ski leg comes first,
Clear the shore, an energy sapping burst.
Waves are moderate to large,
Eyes dash, paddles clash, bash and barge.
Turn the cans, heading in the right direction,
A bit of rudder, a slight correction.
Trying for runners out of reach,
Grab a wave that takes him to the beach.
First transition, with swim leg next,
It’s tense, it’s close, what can one expect.
Channels dragging swimmers off their course,
These Ironmen find extra courage, extra force.
Maintain effort with mounting pride,
Others catch a wave, take a free ride.
Still swimming hard all the way,
The thought is there, “this is my day.”
At the beach, last transition, onto the board,
Already he is breaking from the horde.
Other paddlers clear out the back,
Extra effort to catch the leading pack.
A clear run onto the can,
Determined to be number one Ironman.
Make up distance, close the gap,
Concentrate, ensuring no mishap.
Has he chosen the winning alley?
How many ahead? Take a quick tally.
A swell, a half chance turns into a wave,
In his mind “this is the win I crave.”
Nearing home his eyes are gleaming,
Lungs and muscles hurt, the body’s screaming.
Sore and aching, his heart is thumping,
Pushed by legs like pistons pumping.
He’s on the beach, a sprint to the line,
Passed the leader, “the race is mine.”
The crowd is cheering on the beach,
An achievement thought to be out of reach.
Family and friends have watched this feat,
Too often they’ve seen him taste defeat.
A parents pride, a boyhood dream,
Today, Australian champion, Ironman supreme.
He was tenacious, an inspiration to all,
There have been many who heeded his call.
His cheekiness combined with THAT grin,
Has challenged others, to go on and win.
The wave dies when it reaches the shore,
This Ironman, we shall see no more.
There is this bond, that we cannot sever,
May his memory, live with us, forever.
Provided by Billy Rushton on behalf of the author; Ross Taylor
This poem was originally written (about Dean Mercer) in October 2005.
A last verse was added in 2017 following Dean’s death on 28/8/2017 and read at his memorial service held in Thirroul SLSC on 23/9/2017. It is also available on U tube.
Mollymook Ocean Swimmers Photo of the Day
Ken B., Mollymook Beach Waterfront: Editor for Mollymook News and Destination Mollymook Milton Ulladulla