I didn’t realize that in starting to read Pandora’s Star, I’d be opening a Pandora’s Box of sorts; all the evils of addiction taking a hold of my soul as I was pressed ever onward. The book is nearly a thousand pages long, and yet I read the whole thing over the past few days and sit here wanting more. The world Peter F. Hamilton has crafted is quite intricate, and the way his characters weave together is superbly done. If not for the excessive use of the phrase “enzyme-bonded concrete” to describe his scenes, I wouldn’t have had much to complain about
As such, it can only be expected that I should continue on reading if possible – and thankfully, the sequel and conclusion Judas Unchained has just been acquired. Apparently it’s even longer than Pandora’s Star, so it looks like I’m only around forty-eight percent of the way through the story. Holy shit.
In somewhat related, but hopefully totally not influenced by it news, I saw some weird shit the other night when I was watching the skies for the Perseids. Here’s my first-hand account, pasted from Twitter.
So I’m out front, looking up at the sky just now. Perseids are at peak, so why not. Was out there for about forty minutes. Right as I’m about to come inside, I see something weird at the edge of my vision. It looks like atmospheric contact, but I only just catch it.
So I ignore it, but keep watching thanks to the hint of more things to see (especially in the city where there’s light pollution like crazy). A minute later, I see a streak in the same spot. Short, but bright. I change up where I’m looking to focus on that spot.
Not ten seconds after I start staring at this new spot, I see a light. It blinks, like a camera. Just once. I keep my eye on that part of the sky. The light comes back, this time a slow blink. Like a really long exposure camera flash. I can see now that the light moves.
So I follow the trajectory, and watch as the light randomly blinks and long-flashes. No real pattern, but it moves across the sky. Then it stops, right beside what I believe to be Cassiopeia. It turns and curls back towards its origin.
At this point, it moves behind the tree in my yard. I move to keep an eye on it and the blinking turns to a much less bright and in-between version. Slow, but not like the long exposures. Quicker than that. Then it disappears.
What the fuckity fuck fuck.
I live near an airport, and know what airplanes look like. Helicopters too. I’ve been watching the stars and the meteor showers for years. I know what these things and other celestial bodies move like. This was nothing I’ve ever seen before.
I’m not willing to say it’s aliens, I’m not that excitable – but whatever it was it completely stumps me. Its motion indicated that it was propelling itself somehow, and not moving solely with inertia. It curved back on itself and both sped up and slowed down at times.
I went outside expecting to see something I knew, and came away with questions I’ll likely never get answered. I’m not a fan of this feeling, and I hate the unknown. That’s my story, like it or not.
So yeah, not sure what the hell that was but it sure got my mind going. While I’d love for it to be something awesome (in one way or another) like aliens, it was probably just something weird I’ve never heard of – like the gas in a meteor heating and causing it to flare. It’s interesting to think about though, and it definitely looked like something out of this world.
Back to book reading and story writing for me though, lots to do. 🙂