Just as I was dropping off to sleep last night Bob asked me if I wanted to watch the International Space Station pass over above our heads. I leaped out of bed (in a rather slowish way-- because I was almost asleep...), threw on a warm dorm shirt and followed him out to the porch where we both sat on the top step scanning the sky.
We watched for fifteen minutes or so, looking for something big, bright, and moving fast. We had seen the Space Station a couple of years ago on another clear starry night, but, even though Bob checked the path and the timing again on his computer, we still did not see it fly over. Eventually he went back in to bed. On his way by the computer he checked again and found the ISS was then flying over Europe, so we missed it by perhaps half an hour.
It was such a glorious night and I was so comfortable sitting out on the step that I stayed on for a bit. The moon was a gorgeous giant ball in the sky. There were a couple of very bright stars which I took to be planets, but which I could not identify. There were lovely constellations and individual stars. The peacefulness of the night was beyond description by my poor words. There were occasional tiny cracklings in the trees in front of the house and to the west of the house in the neighborhood of the swamp. These cracklings were not loud enough to think of deer or (Horrors!) bear, but more in the line of small rodents or quiet night-flying birds.
Such a lovely time, and just before I went in there was a special bonus: I saw two falling stars! Robert Hamlin, at Dartmouth, has a Blitzmail bulletin called Stargazers. He lists various star-related events in the sky. It turns out there are some small meteor showers in October! I knew about the Perseids in August which we totally missed this year, and there are the Leonids, I think, in November, but October was news to me. So lovely to see these celestial bodies streaking across the sky.
A great prelude to a good night's sleep! Thank you, Heavenly Father!