I have seen plenty of kangaroos while I have been in the land down under. BUT, they seem to only come out when I am driving (on the left side of the road mind you). After dinner tonight, a few of the astronomers and myself went outside to talk briefly. We were greeted with two kangaroos. One had a joey. I was going to wait until tomorrow to post this, but I thought it would be a good surprise for my friends back in the State to wake up to!
As interesting as the kangaroos are to look at, they can be quite dangerous. With their strong legs, they can kick quite hard. However, my biggest fear is not so much the kangaroo, but the wild astrophysicist. Below is a picture of him in his “natural” habitat. See how he imitates other creatures?
In other news, it stopped raining, but there is thick cloud cover. Due to the clouds, I decided to begin some of the work on the scope. One of the projects is to install new light boxes. As you can see from an earlier post, there is a screen in front of the telescope. This is for calibration images (referred to as “dome flats”) . If you look at the pictures from the previous post, you can see they are small pinkish boxes. The new ones are a bit larger and black.
Some people might be wondering what the actual observatory looks like. Without a dome it is easy to mistake as a shed. Below is what people passing by might see. You can see that the tracks for the roof extend part way up the hill side. The door on the right is to the telescope and the door on the left is to the control room.