Bioluminescence Under A Starry Sky One of the things I love about astrophotography is you never know exactly what you may capture on any given night. You may be lucky enough to get a meteor streaking across frame, or even a sky full of intense air glow.
And last night was just one of those unexpected nights which I would rate right up there as one of my best nights of astrophotography to date. The unexpected thing about this night, was not in the night sky, but rather in the ocean in the form of glowing bioluminescence. Every time the waves broke, bioluminescent phytoplankton was stirred up making the wave glow brightly even to the naked eye. This was certainly something I wasn’t expecting, and it looked amazing under the starry night sky!
This image is a single exposure shot on a Canon 6d in Byron Bay, Australia.
Her childhood vacations were always done on the cheap: day trips to the beach, camping trips where they ate baked beans cooked in the can, road trips spent in the back seat of the station wagon, dutifully looking out the window when her mother pointed out some important landmark and hoping that Charlie wouldn’t throw up on her again.
As an adult, she’s rarely vacationed. In med school she took a couple of trips to Vegas or Atlantic City with her girlfriends. After she joined the FBI, that one ill-fated trip to Maine was enough to permanently turn her off the idea.
And since she left the FBI, it’s been a non-issue. Living with a fugitive doesn’t give you many opportunities for leisure travel.
So when Mulder slipped those plane tickets under her mug, she’d been deeply suspicious. Spending a week on some half-empty island with a suitcase containing nothing but sunscreen, bathing suits, and trashy novels seems like asking for trouble. Surely they’ll run into a sea monster or serial murderer.
It’s like he said. The darkness finds them.
International travel is still complicated, though at least Mulder’s not on the no-fly list or they’d be having a midwinter vacation on the Eastern Shore. She imagines those snowy beaches and shivers. Luckily you don’t need a passport for Puerto Rico.
And so far, Vieques is doing very nicely. Even if they’d had to take a terrifyingly small plane - Mulder unhelpfully referred to it as “the minivan of the skies” - to get here.
Theirs is a tiny house right on the beach, at the the edge of a larger property. It’s small - just a bedroom, a living area, and a bathroom - but well appointed. Scully is particularly pleased to note the large clawfoot tub and the smooth, heavy bedsheets.
Mulder follows her through the house as she touches everything. “Good?” he finally asks. She’s standing in front of the sliding doors, looking out. Behind the house there are two lounge chairs and a hammock tied between palm trees, and then the ocean, just steps away even at low tide. The surf is gentle, the water perfectly blue. It’s idyllic in the extreme.
“Really good,” she says. When she turns around he’s right behind her, and she wraps her arms around him, resting her head on his chest. His heartbeat and the sound of the surf.
Wanderlust (n): a strong, innate desire to travel.
If you suffer from wanderlust, look out for Phenomenal by Leigh Ann Henion next year!
The author reclaimed her sense of wonder by witnessing the monarch butterfly migration in Mexico, lightning storms in Venezuela (the region receives 1.2 million lightning strikes a year), and the Bioluminescent Bay among other phenomena. Along the way she met modern-day shamans, reindeer herders, and people from all walks of life.