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How Big is Big?

Posted by on June 30th, 2014 with 0 Comments

Parkes Radio Telescope

The road trip is underway.

We are travelling through the middle of NSW. The countryside is mostly flat, although not without trees to break up the horizon.

The weather has been wet and dreary. Occasionally, we have entered a storm, viewing it from a distance, the high clouds rising above the deep grey, the curtains of grey falling beneath.

The sky, the land, seems vast… the distances great.

We are singing along to Pink Floyd and Queen playing on the car stereo ­­– big music for a big land.

Our first stop for the day is the CSIRO Parkes Radio Observatory. The dish is huge; the technology fascinating. But it is the numbers that have me astounded. I listen to the sounds of pulsars billions of light years away. I learn about quasars that date almost back to the Big Bang. A huge timeline explains how what we see with the naked eye in the night sky compares with what is “seen” using the Parkes telescope, and comparing that with the blink of the eye that is the history of human life on the planet.

We watch several 3D movies. All are fascinating. The third, “Bigger than Big” puts our scale into perspective, the size of us, our planet, our moon, compared with massive stars in our own galaxy, The Milky Way, with the billions of other galaxies, with the incomprehensible scale of the Universe.

We are so tiny. And yet…

We are driving across a massive country, singing big music, sharing an experience and a love that will bind us as a family with a lifetime of memories.

I cannot fathom the eternity of years, or the distances measured in billions of light years. My tiny brain just does not compute!

But if there is so much love, laughter, song and story in one little family, in a single day’s travel, how much more could I possibly ask for? How big does this Universe need to be… really?

Today I am grateful.

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Hi, I’m Cath

Cath Connell

Creating my amazing life one tiny moment at a time. Bringing the Hubby, a Munchkin and about a dozen tomato plants along for the ride.

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