Friday, April 16, 2010

I Galileo

As we sailed from Mazatlan to Baja, known as the southern crossing, where the mouth of the Sea of Cortez meets the Pacific, Doug and I shared the helm on two-hour "watches" through the night. This was to be a 48-hour sail so we had plenty of night sailing this trip. In the middle of night two Doug suggested I use the stars off the starboard side of the dodger as guides to keep me on course rather than sitting upright directly behind the wheel and using the compass. I gave it a try since it made for a more comfortable sitting position to lean to the side for the next two dark, quiet hours. There was no moon which meant the stars were beautiful and easy to observe.

As I looked upward and out toward those sparkling gems I couldn't help but wonder how Galileo felt as he explored his universe, looking for answers to his wildest theories. I later went to Wikipedia for a quick refresher on Galileo and found that "telescope" comes from tele meaning "far" and skopein meaning "to look or see". Good info for use in home-schooling. I was also reminded that Galileo was ousted by the church for declaring that the sun was the center of the universe. Interesting how thought evolves!

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