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Chasing the Moon

moonset

I remember seeing the moon set into the sea once. It happened during one of the many long bus journeys — Mumbai to Bangalore to Mangalore to Goa. I wasn’t sleeping well and woke for a minute because of a speed breaker and saw it for a second before it was hidden by a hill.

Since then I have wondered if it actually happened. It reminded me of the drunken night in college spent laughing at the fact that no one knew where the moon rises from. If only we had paid attention in school.
A bit of research revealed its relation to the lunar phase. A full moon will rise and set like the sun and a no moon will do the exact opposite. It becomes obvious after thinking about it for a while (brain cell killing alcohol!). Thus, a moon set can only happen on the west coast, on a full moon night, when there are no clouds and the sun doesn’t rise before the moon sets.

My next chance to see this is on 5th January. Its a full moon and its going to set at 5:19AM a full 2 hours before the sun rises. The monsoons are long over so I can hope to have a clear sky. The picture on the left is from the last full moon, the sun flushed the moon before it could actually set. I’d like to believe that I still have some brain cells left and what I saw was real.

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