You may catch it as you're commuting home or walking into the house. At first it looks like a plane but it doesn't move like a plane. It just glistens and when you stare at it long enough you will wonder, "Wow, what is that thing?
The whole world was dark, everything visible to my eyes coated in the same uniform darkness except for the small, oddly-shaped patches of dim orange directly at the center of my vision. I felt a cramp in my neck as I mentally beseeched them to brighten, to expand.
Logging on to the Internet, it was somewhat disturbing to see the weather forecast for Mauna Kea the next day: At the summit 0 to 20 percent cloud cover with high winds, temperatures near freezing and 50 percent chance of fog. Uh, oh...
Australian artist Lynette Wallworth was determined to use the rare occurrence of the transit of Venus to create a sense of perspective and get people to think about the global problems that the world's ocean currently faces.
If you missed the Transit of Venus in 2004, then today, June 5, 2012, is the last time you will see this rare astronomical event until December 2117! I can't begin to imagine society the next time a human sees the black dot of Venus in transit.
The next pair of Venus transits won't be until 2117 and 2125. So, unless you are lucky and healthy enough to live for another 105 years, this will be your last chance to see a Venus transit from the surface of the Earth. But -- aha! there's the catch -- "from the surface of the Earth."
On June 5, Venus will pass in front of the sun in the same rare transit that sent men like Chappe, Hell and Cook racing to the ends of the earth and facing off against some of the gravest perils of a candlelit age.
Alaska may have missed out on the prime viewing of the annular solar eclipse on May 20, but there's no better place to be than the Last Frontier to see the June 5 transit of Venus, an astronomical event that only rolls around twice every century or so.