Path of Totality during Solar Eclipse

On August 21, 2017 my girls and I drove to Columbia, SC  to be in the path of totality of the solar eclipse.  It truly was a once in a life time experience and here is why:

  • You cannot see the anything less than 100% of the eclipse without glasses.

Photo Aug 21, 2 00 03 PM

Without glasses it looked like a normal day for the most part.  That means

You see this…

Photo Aug 21, 2 35 44 PM

Instead of this……

Photo Aug 21, 2 37 17 PM (1)

There were a lot of disappointed people who thought they would see the a lot more being in the <99% range but the sad realization is: if you are not in the path of totality you will just notice a lighting change. But put on a pair of glasses and you can see so much more.

Photo Aug 21, 2 38 07 PM

  • It took 1 hour for the moon to travel across the face of the sun. During that time you could only see the eclipse through the filtered glasses.
  • At the start of the eclipse my middle daughter, Olivia, noticed birds flying very high, almost too high to be thought of as normal, a quarter of the way in they began to chirp as if it were morning, but at the moment of totality, I do not remember a single chirp.
  • The lighting during the eclipse is so weird. I saw blue and silver hues and then darkness. Moments before the moon blotted out the sun, the light around us shifted. It became highly concentrated, filtered or polarized. It was a silvery white light and when you looked around it was slightly unsettling. Your shadow is off, not in the right place. During totality it was like 8 pm on a summer night. I am not sure how to explain it. It is nothing like I have ever experienced.

Photo Aug 21, 2 40 26 PM

This photo was taken 40 seconds before totality.  Look how bright the sun was.  It looks like my face is over exposed.  You can see it was hurting Julia’s and Emily’s eyes

  • The shift in lighting or the pull of the gravity made us feel off balanced and out of sorts. As my eldest daughter Emily put it, we felt disoriented.  My friend Lance said, that a happy dread came over him.  It definitely has an psychosomatic effect on you.
  • The moon slid across the final portion of the sun and in a flash of brilliance we witnessed the “diamond stage” where there is a ring around the sun and a bright spot on the edge. This lasted only a moment. One breath and it was gone.  (Photo credit: Instagram jakeihde and Team21studio)
  • The moon slid into place and we sat there in awed silence. It was this amazing flicker and then it was there. My mind told me that I heard a sound but this couldn’t be possible, I could swear I heard a “swooosh”. The sun’s brilliance glowed and danced behind a solid black mass. It was glowing white and shown so brightly but didn’t hurt to look at. The moon looked like a pupil and the sun the iris. This was the most beautiful thing I have ever seen.

Photo Aug 21, 2 45 52 PM

  • 2 minutes went by in a blink of an eye and we witnessed the diamond stage again on the other side.
  • There is a change in the vibrations and the frequencies of the energy on the earth. You can feel it. Some feel emotional. Some feel exhilarated. This is scientifically proven. I felt emotional looking into the eye of the sun. I felt in touch with the galaxy. I was in awe of God’s creations.  I teared up with emotion.  My youngest daughter Julia said it was the coolest thing she has ever seen or felt.
  • Towards the end of the totality a red ring came around the moon.  My Aunt Anne gets credit for this photo.  At this point, I was too busy sitting there gawking at this site.


  • In a quick flash, it was over.  Our eyes were blinded by the sun’s rays again and we had to quickly look away.
  • The moon made its retreat and for the next hour it slowly moved away.
  • Photos taken don’t even come close to what we saw and words just can’t describe the beauty of it.
  • All four of us had a slight headache afterwards. Our eyes felt sore like muscle strain. By the time I got home, I just wanted to close them.
  • I felt a bit of vertigo. Emily felt sick, her tummy was in knots. Olivia got into the car and immediately went to sleep. Julia was full of energy. All of these are symptoms that have been documented of people after watching an total solar eclipse. We couldn’t understand why we were feeling the way we were so Emily did some research and found this neat article. Sure enough everything we felt was discussed. It may seem like a bunch of hooey but if you were in the path of totality. I know you felt what we felt and can accept that we are all connected to the earth, sun and moon. All four of us felt the connection.

It is a once in a life time event to be in the path of totality. The next solar eclipse to hit the USA will be in 2024 and I will again, be in the path of totality, this time with my husband who couldn’t attend this one because of work. I urge you to get inside the path of totality it is amazing.


Keep the Lust for Wandering Ya’ll



Thank you to Anne Townsend for her wonderful photo of the red ring around sun.

Thank you to the city of Aiken, SC for the beautiful photo of the diamond phase.

Thank you to where we retrieve information on how we were feeling after the eclipse.


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