Sosusvlei Namibia

May 24 2014


ave you ever been late up and watched the sky above you ? Did you ever wondered whats all about There ? Well with my little telescope I’ve (picture below) been many times awake during several nights, even with temperatures like this (-15 degrees below zero). Yes, perhaps I am a dreamer, but it does not harm anyone. So a few days ago I spotted Orion in all its beauty….You guessed it already, my favorite constellation is Orion, with the mighty Betelgeuze. The giant red star Betelguese – the red star in the shoulder of the constellation Orion – is 700 million km across, about 800 times larger than the Sun. Light takes 1 hour to travel from one side of the giant star to the other. The name of this star means “The Armpit of the Central One” in Arabic, which shows that like many other constellations, Orion was recognized across many cultures. Ever wondered how to pronounce it? This is how: Be7tel7geuse (btl-jz, btl-jz). Betelgeuse is the 12th brightest star in the sky. It is called Alpha Orionis even though it is fainter than Beta Orionis (Rigel). This is because Betelgeuse, a variable star, was misclassified.

Betelgeuse is also known as: @ Betelguex; Betelgeuze; Beteiguex; Al Mankib.
@ Alpha Orionis
@ HR 2061
@ HD 39801


o, you have problably heard of the Southern Cross, but this constellation is not to be seen at this side of the northern hemisphere. Its a pitty. Two years ago, my daughther and I where in the Namibian desert called “Sosusvlei” where we had the privilege to adore the milkyway in al its enourmus beauty , and within it the constellation very faint the Southern Cros. The Southern Cross constellation is eagerly sought by travellers from the North, visiting the Southern Hemisphere. The cross has four main stars marking the tips (alpha, beta, gamma and delta). These four stars are also on the New Zealand flag. A smaller star (epsilon), separate from the cross, is included on the Australian flag. Two bright stars, alpha and beta Centauri, are pointers to the head of the cross. Do not be confused by three crosses in the Southern sky. Only the smallest and brightest, with two pointers aimed at the head of the cross, is the true cross. The brightest star (alpha Crucis) is at the foot of the true cross. The pointers lie to the east. The diamond cross has no pointers and is fainter than the other two. The head of the diamond cross is just below (north of) a very bright part of the milky way, which includes numerous star clusters and the amazing eta carina nebula. Many clusters and the nebula are visible in binoculars. The head of the diamond cross (theta carina) is actually in a star cluster, which makes the head look fuzzy to the naked eye. In binoculars you can see many of the cluster stars around theta carina. So its a very stange constellation.

Southern Cross

Watch video Sosusvlei - © Mazalien 1999 - 2014

So enough talked abouth stars, and go on reading and listening to a personal favourite of mine with this poem and song about the Southern Cross by Jason Webly, just click on the image below and enjoy……..: Southern Cross (c)2002 by Jason Webley
Jason Webley

Hey, do you know where you’re going?
Have you noticed its snowing,
Although it is June?
They, said your weakness was growing,
That your rapture was showing,
Just a little too soon.
But under these mountains,
The nights and the shadows grow long.
The stars up above you feel wrong.
This is not your sky.
Pray, to a strange constellation.
Thank God for your isolation,
This forever goodbye.

Dawn, throws its light on the covers.
In this bed there’s another,
Asleep at your side.
Gone, the embrace of a lover,
And the fire you discovered,
Already has died.
Her body recoils,
As your hand goes to touch her again.
She’s a temple that won’t let you in.
At her side you’re alone.
On her back is the same constellation,
Confirming your alienation.
No this flesh is not home.

You, carry a vague conviction,
This life rose from an eviction,
Out of your homeland.
True, but it’s also addiction,
To this soft crucifixion, Under these foreign hands.
And like all Christs before you,
You kneel down beneath the night sky,
To look into your father’s eyes,
And only feel lost.
Crucified to a strange constellation,
A new king awaits coronation,
But there will be no great revelation,
Your journey is your destination,
And discomfort could be your salvation,
Here, under the Southern Cross.

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