or is it?
Stretching along Rte 1 from Houlton to Presque Isle, Maine, is a 40-mile-long model of the Solar System. The scale is 1:93,000,000. At this scale, one mile equals the distance from the Earth to the Sun. We had noticed Saturn on our way North as we zipped by in the RV –
“Hey, that looked like Saturn back there…..” –
so it seemed like a worthwhile challenge for us to find the rest of the solar system on our drive to the Houlton Fair last weekend.
We started with the Sun – at the center of things.
The sun was represented by this arch in a building at University of Maine, Presque Isle that isn’t open on the weekends, so this will have to do for our starting place!
From there –
Mercury and Venus
Earth with its Moon
This is Ceres – one of the “new” dwarf planets, and an asteroid belt (both of which seem to need just a bit if lovin’).
But next up is Jupiter, with four moons –
Wow – it’s almost a rest stop!
Ok, next is Saturn (see above :)) and then Uranus –
and Neptune –
And finally – Pluto –
Which is really itsy-bitsy-teeny-tiny…..
Ok, so I suppose this post is a little geeky, but I really found this model fascinating. With a scale of 1 to 93 million, it really puts those high school solar system models in perspective. And then when you think that our solar system is just one tiny part of an amazingly huge (if not infinitely huge) universe, it just boggles my mind. And yet, our little earth is tilted just the right way, with just the right atmosphere that it sustains life. Our life. Us.
your handmade sky-jewelry,
Moon and stars mounted in their settings.
Then I look at my micro-self and wonder,
Why do you bother with us?
Why take a second look our way?
Yet we’ve so narrowly missed being gods,
bright with Eden’s dawn light.
You put us in charge of your handcrafted world,
repeated to us your Genesis-charge,
Made us lords of sheep and cattle,
even animals out in the wild,
Birds flying and fish swimming,
whales singing in the ocean deeps.
God, brilliant Lord,
your name echoes around the world.
Psalm 8, The Message