Jan had been waiting for months, and finally it arrived. A giant brown package weighing almost fifty pounds was delivered to her front door.
“I can’t believe it’s finally here,” she said.
“What’s in this thing,” asked the UPS driver.
“It’s my new telescope! I’ll finally be able to get a good look at M101 tonight.”
“I’m not sure what that is, but it sounds like a party. Sign here.”
She scribbled her name the best she could with the cheap plastic Bic, and dragged the box inside. Garbage went out that morning, but she didn’t care. The house could be decorated with ripped cardboard and chunks of white foam for a couple days. She tore into the box and went to work. The primary mirror needed only a slight alignment, but after studying videos on the Internet for the last two weeks, she had the procedure down cold.
She rushed out to the garage for a pliers and a screwdriver, and went to work building the base for the scope. It sat low to the ground and swiveled. Dobsonians are quite possibly the best possible mount for a reflecting telescope with an eight-inch mirror.
By the time she finished putting it all together, it was getting dark. She lugged the heavy monster outside onto an extended patio with a clear view of the heavens. As she looked up, it wasn’t the glow of Jupiter that adorned the fading sky, however. It was cloud cover.
“Maybe it’ll pass,” she said. She frowned at the sky, and went inside to check the weather.
When it started to drizzle, she knew her plan was foiled. Brand new telescope, but no viewing tonight. She lugged the big tube back inside and placed it near the pile of packaging debris. Pains shot through her back from all the heavy lifting. She glanced out of the patio window, and grumbled at the sky as thunder grumbled back at her.