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“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss it you will land among the stars.”
- Les Brown
How did you sleep last night? Researchers have discovered that during full moons, participants took five minutes longer to fall asleep, slept 20 minutes less overall, and had 30 per cent less “deep sleep.” They were not made aware of the possible moon connection or the phase of the moon when they took part in the experiment.
I ask this because, while you were sleeping, the December Moon turned 100-per-cent full. It happened at precisely 1:42 a.m. NT; 1:12 a.m. AST; or 12:12 a.m. for our friends in the eastern time zone. December 12 (12/12) at 12:12 a.m. – that’s a lot of 12s!
That’s very cool but this month’s full moon is special for another reason. You might notice that the December full moon tracks high across the sky. The Full Cold Moon, the Long Night Moon or Moon Before Yule sits above the horizon for a longer period of time than other full moons.
You can check that out tonight, and while you’re out there, you might catch a shooting star. The Geminids, the most active meteor shower of the year, is in full swing. They can be seen about two weeks in early to mid-December, but they typically look their best on the night of Dec. 13, when the shower is most prolific. On a clear dark night, away from city lights, this shower has been known to produce 50 meteors per hour. If you’re trying to catch the show in the city, you might have to halve that number. As well, this year’s Full Cold Moon will make it a bit more difficult than usual to spot them. I think it’s still worth having a look. Geminids are rich in fireballs and many of them may be seen in spite of lunar interference.
Head out around 9 p.m. on Friday; be sure to look away from the moon towards the darkest part of the night sky. Don’t forget to make a wish!
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Cindy Day is the chief meteorologist for SaltWire Network