Milky Way Memories

Long before I was allowed to use our family camera, the stars fascinated me. A recent trip to the Big Meadows in the Shenandoah National Park reminded me of the first time I saw the Milky Way.

It was a rare occasion that we were driving a load of grain to the house after dark. If you ask me I was a darned good co-pilot for my Dad when he was driving the truck home at the end of the day.

I was great at spotting the important things like rabbits, raccoons, skunks, and deer that might be hanging around in the dark.

As we topped the hill west of the old Army Airbase, the stars were bright that night.  Dad pointed out the Milky Way and said the weather was going to change because it was so bright.

There was no way in those days our camera would have captured that scene. The slow-moving farm truck gave me lots of time to ask questions and record that moment in my memory forever.

This night under the Milky Way in the mountains was as just as memorable as that night riding along with my Dad. It took a bit to get oriented as I was looking up at the stars more than at the back of my camera.

Alas, after returning to the cabin I found my years of co-pilot experience had failed a bit early on. Somehow, I didn’t spot my friend’s camera in the corner of this image. Guess I need to go back to co-pilot school, you never know what might be hanging around in the dark.

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