I remember how we looked forward to the big celebrations that were being planned for October 2020. How could we ever have imagined that our lives were about to change drastically and due to something as strange as a virus. Organisers bounced back after total lock down and proceeded with preparations for an incredible online event.
To keep me motivated and inspired during a time of isolation, I spent many evenings taking images of the Moon. When the SAAO launched the astrophotography competition, I had many Moon images to choose from.
In this shot the Moon seemed to be floating above the clouds, in contrast with the heaviness of heart that I oftened experienced during this period. Entering the competition was more about being part of the special celebrations and making a positive contribution. I parted with my Moon and enjoyed the celebrations to the full.
I read the email over and over, just to be sure. Confirmation came when I saw the following post by the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) on social media:
The year 2020 was a big milestone for the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO), marking 200 years of its existence as an astronomical observatory.This landmark allows us to commemorate not only our scientific accomplishments, but also to celebrate our country’s rich cultural heritage as a whole.Since this is a celebration, the SAAO held an Astrophotography Competition in partnership with Scifest Africa. The winning images will be exhibited at the SAAO Visitor Center, which is currently under construction in Cape Town.