[2/3] Struggling Through the Night

About one-month-and-half fairytale story just ended few days ago. Here is the second story…

As Jury Assistant, yeay!

As Jury Assistant, yeay!

July, 24th, I finally met again with my heavy baby in Jati, one of meeting room in Grand Artos. I was glad because my telescope was

in perfect condition even after had a long journey from Bandung to Magelang. The first day in Magelang, we had some briefing with LOs for introduction to the telescope and then we practiced at Lumbini after a long time not touching them. The sky was clear enough. Even with the street lamp, the Centaur could be seen beautifully. To make story short, assume that the first day just ended in a good way.

Greeting from my heavy baby (re: telescope) number 15

Greeting from my heavy baby (re: telescope) number 15


The telescope paradise

July, 25th
In the next day, I was a little bit regretted that I never had dragon-stomach before. These kinds of food were so yummy! Well, kinda embarrassing, but who care. Hahaha. This day we had Lokakarya with the Juries. We just joined that kind of meeting until the problems of observational test done. After that we were hunting Batik for requirements to join opening ceremony tomorrow. Fortunately, I brought my Batik from home, so I didn’t need to buy. So I just looking for discounted book.

July, 26th
In the 3rd day for us, or the 1st day for participant, we did some trial to practice Spica assembly, now with the real Spica and glue. Kinda distressed realizing my English just below average, but I tried. Just hope they would understand me. We had final briefing to make sure we all knew what we should do in the peak day.

July, 27th, The day for introduction to the instrument came. I thought I was the one who nervous during waiting the participant, I was wrong. I didn’t find any reason to nervous, but everyone just felt it. Hahaha. The participants of my telescope were very nice. I thought they would question me some type of problems to test, but no. (Though I wanted them to do so, so there would be more ‘greget’) They just practiced with their telescope and sometimes I reminded them the DOs and DON’Ts. The first work was done well and we were going back to Artos.

Introduction to telescope

During introduction to instrument Left to Right: Ayrton (LO), Farhan (Bangladesh), Arman (Iran), Yu Jun (Singapore), Anand (India), Rizwaan (England), Lucie (Czech), and you know who.


After introduction of the instrument done

Surprisingly I got message that the bus would depart to opening ceremony venue soon. I didn’t know when the time exactly before. Luckily I could go to the bus in the last second. I could say that the opening ceremony was great, but would be better if the food wasn’t beside the stage. Because you know that distortion of people caused by food gravitation was very huge. In this opening ceremony I met Indonesia National Team for the first time. Glad to see them, since I was fail to be like them even in the first. Ah, forget it…

I just found the truth that Indonesia was lack of appreciation. I didn’t know how this little thing could be affected to every soul until my friend told me. It wasn’t about the recognition from government, or the prizes given after win. This was simpler. We were too stingy just to give applause. The big thing should be started from the small thing, right?

TOASTI 2014 in Opening Ceremony

TOASTI 2014 in Opening Ceremony

July, 28th
This was the morning when the first time I touched Puri Asri. What a nice hotel for participant so they’d interact. When I came to the meeting room for Spica assembly, we had another task to do, rearranging table and chair. Not a big problem I thought. And now, I felt more nervous. We did Spica assembly together, one by one part. I realized that my bad English just really shameful. I thought they understood me by what I was doing, not what I was sayin. The best feeling I felt when I could solve for their problems in assembly their own Galilean telescope that very fun. Unfortunately, I didn’t take any picture with them 🙁

Then Spica’s team back to Artos. Not long after that we went to Lumbini for the first attempt of observational test. We set our telescope, tried to make the perfect and prime condition (meanwhile it almost impossible to do polar alignment with this unique telescope).

I tried to pointing, the object was very easy to find. But everything became worse until we knew that naked eye and Spica session delayed about more than an hour. The moonlight was brighter more and more. Our object was inside the halo area of the moon. Even it is extended object and sometimes could be seen by naked eye, now it was difficult to find in high humidity and bright variable sky. I never found that object after the transit time. Now I had mixed feeling and anxious since I as jury assistant must help them to after 10 minutes. I felt more agitated because their medal’s fate would be in my hand.

The worse thing was getting more since the hairdryer couldn’t work. I’ve expected before that we would have some technical trouble in electricity. Nothing could be done in that foggy area without hairdryer. Such a wise decision to delay the main telescope round to the next day. The time, fog, variable sky, bright moonlight, and some technical problem as the reasons. I was relieved, but still frightened about what would happen in the next day. Hopefully tomorrow the weather agreed to be our friend and the moon would be further away. Hopefully…

First attempt of observational test with main telescope

First attempt of observational test with main telescope

July, 29th
Today was the last day and the 2nd attempt of observational test with main telescope. Some plan changed, from planetarium as complimentary of main telescope became obligatory test. At first, I could point to that ‘h’ shaped object in about 2 minutes. The night was getting late, but the weather was not getting better than yesterday. The fog still down, spread the moonlight. The moon was 13o further than last night, but getting brighter. Our object didn’t move from that hell(o) area of moonlight. I was not too amazed since the night was about blue moon.

The electricity for hairdryer was not a problem anymore, we’ve tested before. We did first turn after delayed for a while because the sky was not clearly clear, especially at the object area. Meanwhile, we should wait to make sure the object has transit. I hoped that all participant was expert in telescope, but it just my hope. There were so many participant requested the assistant to help her/him before 10 minutes. Some of them just pretended to play with telescope, or read the problems, or whatever else to wait for help. And now, we’re as telescope assistant worried more and more, not sure to help them.

Hairdryer was sounded everywhere and every time. The sky was really bright. Nobody saw full body of Scorpius. Not easy to find Shaula and Lesath by bare eyes. The air condensed and covered all surface of my lenses. What you see in eyepiece or finder was nothing, but grey. Final decision was decided after the first turn finished. The main telescope round was not delayed anymore, but cancelled.

Hard to say what I felt that time. We hugged each other, with our mixed feeling. 2 weeks of training seemed useless. I’ve done until this far, I’ve dreamed the participant would really enjoy the test with my telescope, but it couldn’t be real at all. Moreover, I was glad because I knew would be hard to find M7. The object was so easy at once, but the weather and glare of blue moon made it complicated.


Finder Chart of M7


Our fenomenal object, M7 or NGC 6475

I noted that the cancelation was not because of us. The fault was not in our stars, but the fault was in our moon. Kak Wira said, nothing would be not useful at all. I agreed him. 2 weeks of training has sculpted a beautiful relief in my mind. I have encountered new people, discovered new experience.

At least, I’ve did my best… At least, we’ve did our best…


Selfie with Borobudur behind when preparing telescope for 2nd day of observational test


Last day for selfie

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