Yes, my home, Franklin, NC, my place of work, Southwestern Community College, and my alma mater, Western Carolina University, was in the path of totality during yesterday’s Great American Eclipse. You’ve probably heard about it already, or experienced it yourself, but if not, here is my experience.
While my family hiked up one of the tallest peaks of Franklin to get a 360 degree view of the event, I spend the first half of the day working at SCC. I preferred it this way, because when stuff like this happens, I feed off of hype, and there was ton of it at SCC. We combined our Welcome Back, our Fall Festival and our Solar Eclipse events all in one. It was welcome to the public, staff, faculty and students, and I think it’s safe to say that fun was had by all.
I hung out with some of my good co-workers, handing out solar glasses, and as the time passed, I noticed a slow but surely drop in temperature and a dim in lighting. This was my favorite part. It was both exciting and scary at the same time. I didn’t know how the totality would affect me, my pets or those who were driving.
But, that two minutes of totality was worth every second leading up to it. It was something you would see on Harry Potter, Star Wars or Batman. It was magical, scientific and uncertain, all at once. I feared of taking off my glasses, fearing if I left my classes off for a second, I could burn my eyes out. Fortunately, I remembered I was told when I saw the diamond ring, to put the glasses back on. I did so, and as soon as it happened, the event ended. The temperature went back up, and the light started to shine again.
The unfortunate downside was the traffic. I didn’t have to endure it too long, but for other who were trying to leave, they were bumper to bumper for 30 miles or more. It shows how many people were in Franklin/Clayton during the event, but it doesn’t say how much of our economy was boosted. I hope it was a lot.
It was an experience I will always treasure. I may never see one again, but at least I can say I saw one at one point in my life. Do you have an experience you want to share? Feel free to post it in the comments below. In the meantime, visit my books on Amazon, where they’ll be on sale for $2.99 per Kindle copy.