Monday, January 17, 2005

Titan: 1, Bats: Nil

I have previously mentioned the nightly exodus of fruit bats from their colonies along the Yarra river (having been lately evicted from their stronghold in the botanical gardens).

Now that they have been pointed out to her by her cousins, Little Missy has developed 'bats in her belfry', and the bedtime rituals are no longer complete unless we peer out from her window into the dusk to 'see some bats!' (the satisfying emphasis she places on that last word cannot be adequately duplicated in text)

In fact, LM is no stranger to viewing the night sky. About a year ago, I pointed out a nice juxtaposition of Venus and the crescent moon to her. This got some interest, but it wasn't until I pointed to Jupiter that I got a real reaction. Saying 'goodnight to Jupiter' was added to the evening ritual until it got too close to the sun to be seen any more.

I notice that Saturn is becoming visible again in the evening, which is timely, given the recent, successful, descent of the Huygens probe.

The other day, I was downloading the first photos from the Huygens probe for my father (who is near blind, thinks the web is an instrument of the devil or Rupert Murdoch, or both, yet is very interested in space exploration). LM happened upon the printouts and asked what they were. I explained that they were pictures from Titan (puzzled frown..), a place near Saturn, and Jupiter. Ah, yes! Now she understood enough to add her own erudite opinion:
'Dere's no bats dere!'
Which, as you can see, is fair enough!


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home