Happy New Year!!!!
My family and I just got back from a two-week trip to the United Kingdom, where we caught up with family and did a bit of sightseeing. We were mostly around the London area but also spent time in Hertfordshire, visiting one of my favorite cities - Cambridge! We checked out lots of museums, markets, pubs and even went to a theater in London's West End. We ate a lot of fish and chips, sausage rolls, pub roasts and (I) drank a few pints of Guinness in between. :-)
Of astronomical note, we visited the Royal Greenwich Observatory. Sadly it was closed on the day we went there as it was the Boxing Day holiday. Still, it is hallowed ground in astronomy circles and it was great to see the various observatory buildings as well as the Greenwich Meridian line itself. The view of London from Greenwich was also very dramatic, and we could clearly see the Docklands area and Millenium Dome/O2 Dome.
Additionally, our last night in London was New Years' Eve. A small, partial lunar eclipse was predicted but the day remained mostly cloudy (Hey, it's England!). We went out to meet the family for dinner at a nearby Greek restaurant and when I stepped outside the skies had unexpectedly cleared, revealing the lunar partial eclipse - what luck! I ran back inside and grabbed my Nikon D40 and took a few shots at 200mm without a tripod (didn't have one there). Below is the best shot to come out. It's not exactly sharp but you can see the Earth's shadow nonetheless.
Anyway, a great holiday with some astro fun thrown in there for good measure. More astro updates to come soon, including some new equipment updates...