It is mid-morning, and I am busy with preparations for an elaborate Sunday meal. My beautiful and loyal red colander is my constant companion on my many small sojourns to the sink, where I wash vegetables and drain soaked lentils. The colander has been with me for over twelve years now. But little did I know that my colander would serve a much bigger purpose.
Just the day after Christmas, all news channels were talking about the unique annular solar eclipse that was about to unfold across the sky later that day. Being in Asia, we were going to have a clear view of this rare cosmic occurence.
My kids were at home, and there was a great sense of excitement, when we discovered that the sun was going to be directly above our building during the eclipse. Using a selfie-stick and some smart manouevering, I managed to continuously click pictures. Just as we inched closer to peak-eclipse time, big fluffy clouds played hide and seek with the sun. And after all the excitement, what if we could not see the eclipse unfolding at all? Hmmm. We scoured the internet for ideas; one website talked about using a colander to study the shadows made my the colander on the ground.
We kicked into action. Our unsuspecting colander, after a morning of hard work, had just gone into its cupboard to catch a few winks. We placed the colander atop two sticks, and our experiment was ready.
The colander’s shadow was clear and dark on the tiled floor. And as the eclipse progressed, it grew fainter, and at one point almost disappeared. Luckily, the naughty clouds parted at the most important time and we could capture the miracle on the phone as well. We could also see the ring of fire.
It was an amazing experience. We had witnessed something so beautiful and amazing. What was even more exciting was the fact that mankind could predict that such an event was going to occur. Truly, both the marvels of science and the magic of the universe were in evidence. We pronounced ourselves fully satisfied and content.
Cut to the here and now, my colander is back to its duties, not realizing what an important role it played in bringing some magic into our lives. I smile and continue with my cooking.