Mumbaikars, brace for a meteor shower this week

Updated: 11 December, 2018 10:20 IST | The Guide Team | Mumbai

A meteor shower this week promises to leave you wide-eyed with wonder

A meteor shower lights up a night sky
A meteor shower lights up a night sky

We have had the privilege of witnessing a meteor shower just once in life. But even though it was a decade ago, the experience is etched in our memory like a permanent tattoo on a person's skin.

We were spending the night in the middle of sand dunes an hour away from Jaisalmer, with nothing but a mattress and blanket to serve as bedding. The sky had been so clear that it seemed as if all the stars in the known galaxy were peering at us from outer space. And suddenly, a cosmic battle began out of the blue. Meteors flashed across the night sky as if two divine armies were engaged in warfare with each other, the streaks of light resembling the gunfire in the fights between the Republic and Empire in the Star Wars series of films.

This went on for a considerable period of time, snatching our night's sleep since we sat up wide-eyed. And by the end of it, we remember being gripped with a sense of existentialism, wondering about how small and insignificant the human species is in the larger scheme of things.

Now, that same experience is up for grabs for Mumbaikars five hours away from the city. An event at a campsite in Panchgani is being organised around the Geminids meteor shower, an annual celestial affair that gets its name from the fact that its radiant lies in the Gemini constellation. At its peak, around 120 to 160 meteors whoosh past each other every hour, meaning that if you missed Diwali celebrations, this is your chance to make up for it and how.

"We have India's first public-access space observatory on our 80-acre premises, and people can spend the night in what we call 'tabins' - a combination of tents and cabins. There is also a farmhouse with dormitories, apart from alpine tents, meaning we can accommodate around 200 people," says Madhu Moulee of Natventure Holidays, the event's organiser, adding that there is also a farming area on the premises where people can stoop down to pick strawberries, meaning it's an experience that will bring you at one with both the earth and the sky.

ON: December 13, 5 pm to December 14, 10 am
AT: Natventure Holidays Pvt Ltd, near Hotel Orchid, Nehru Road.
CALL: 9561213266

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First Published: 11 December, 2018 08:00 IST

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