Photograph: Chaideer Mahyuddin/AFP/Getty Images
People gather at the Ulee Lheue mosque in Indonesia’s Banda Aceh to wait for the eclipse.
The world watched the solar eclipse this past Wednesday. There were scientists and tourists who’d booked their on various islands from Sumatra through to the Molluccas, taking in Sulawesi. Some flights had been rescheduled to take in the once-in-a lifetime minute or so. Eyes were shielded with paper-framed glasses, welders masks and other contractions, such as bowls of water which diminished the sun’s glare.
I watched it on the internet, others on TV. In Jakarta, there was only a nibble blocked by the passing of the moon, yet although the sun still shone brightly, the air seemed to turn a peculiar bluish-grey.
And the mosques were crowded. As the sky darkened, the congregations knelt down, foreheads touched the floor, and they missed the full experience.
I thought it most peculiar.