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I usually have the company of my female cat. She's quite tiny compared to my Norwegian forest cat but he's so timid my little cat see's off anything she considers trespassing and protects my big cat, it's quite funny to watch. She's my little Nija, lol. I feel quite safe with her by my side, lol. 

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1 hour ago, fozzybear said:

yours looks brand new mine is around 20 years old and good as day one albeit a few dings works everytime and a rather heavy torch no wonder the Police use them. :) 

It’s new - I’d had one previously for years but allowed some poor battery discipline…

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2 hours ago, fozzybear said:

yours looks brand new mine is around 20 years old and good as day one albeit a few dings works everytime and a rather heavy torch no wonder the Police use them. :) 

 

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On 15/06/2021 at 21:49, Pixies said:

It's not the Maglite itself, it's the 4x D-cell batteries!

True, if you wanted to save money you could just put four batteries in a sock...

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On 15/06/2021 at 20:54, Astro Noodles said:

What on earth do you use that for?

 

when Commissioner Gordon needs help at a dodgy dark site?

 

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I try to work next to my vehicle with one (only one) door or hatch open. It’s not perfect, but it’s something. I do hear occasional growls from alligators (we also have bears and panthers). Generally the alligator growls don’t bother me too much as they are far off but there was one night where they were exceptionally loud and seemed to be coming from all around. It was a few weeks before mating season but exceptionally warm so I decided it was time to pack it in.

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I have been planning to get out of light polluted Southampton and go to darker sky’s, for example, in the New Forest.

Someone mentioned going with an observing friend(s) but coming into this pass time during the pandemic I didn’t bother finding anyone local with similar interests or even a club - obviously meeting groups wasn’t something that could be done. And someone with more experience could advise on good, local, sensible, dark sites.

This is going off at a slight tangent but I had a look on the forum for a section etc on clubs and/or contacting people in the local area but couldn’t see anything. Probably missed it but is there a place to find this sort of info?

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18 minutes ago, PeterStudz said:

I have been planning to get out of light polluted Southampton and go to darker sky’s, for example, in the New Forest.

Someone mentioned going with an observing friend(s) but coming into this pass time during the pandemic I didn’t bother finding anyone local with similar interests or even a club - obviously meeting groups wasn’t something that could be done. And someone with more experience could advise on good, local, sensible, dark sites.

This is going off at a slight tangent but I had a look on the forum for a section etc on clubs and/or contacting people in the local area but couldn’t see anything. Probably missed it but is there a place to find this sort of info?

Try Go Stargazing:

https://gostargazing.co.uk/stargazing-event-organisers/

 

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On 08/06/2021 at 19:07, Astro Noodles said:

Or perhaps take a dog?

I’ll just take my PhD student. He’s built like a tank and loves astronomy. 

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I have read this topic with interest because I too have the same problem. As I said when I introduced myself, I live in a small town in central Sardinia (Orotelli) on the outskirts. The light pollution is not excessive, you can see the Milky Way, but for some years I have been thinking about taking a night excursion to a completely dark place outside the country, about 5 - 10 km away, taking one of my short refractors with me. , or 70/400 or 80/400. In Sardinia we have the advantage of not having wolves, bears, coyotes and even poisonous snakes. I do not worry about the rest of the nocturnal fauna, they would certainly stay away from me, it is true that in the dark and alone one goes to notice so many noises that could make him worry and make him go wrong with observations. What worries me are any malicious or bored people in my country who might play a bad joke on me to have fun and laugh at me for centuries. Even the Italian law is quite strict and too much guarantee towards those who make some, defending oneself is a right of the person! However as a weapon I recommend the belt of the trousers and to hit on the side of the buckle, no legislation obliges me to wear suspenders! However, I find the suggestion to go in a group and not alone, a problem could also be putting your foot in the dark in a ditch and getting a twist, there are not only two or four-legged coyotes!

If you want to laugh (and I laughed at the time when I read it in the newspaper years ago): years ago, when I was a university student (I am almost 54 years old) in the countryside of the interior of Sardinia near a town (I can't tell you which one) some people made a "trekking" in the Gennargentu mountains and were attacked by local morons receiving a severe lesson; the tapini did not know that the hikers were British soldiers in plain clothes who were practicing in the mountains of Sardinia (Gennargentu is a mountain massif with the highest peaks on the island).

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What kind of people would play a joke on a harmless amateur astronomer and laugh abut it for centuries afterwards? The youth of today 🙄 They should bring back birching, or national service.😄

I think that one thing that we all share is the fear that some nutter may do us harm, wherever we live. Personally, I feel safer out on my own in the countryside than I do in my suburban back yard.

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3 hours ago, Astro Noodles said:

They should bring back birching, or national service.😄

 

No please, else you'd have to fear thugs who have been trained to fight! 😱

I have been lucky so far, people walking dogs in the hills always keep their distance, and the only time someone has seen my telescope and decided to investigate, they were four grammar school pupils. We had a lovely one-hour chat about astronomy!

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I did have a look on the internet to see if Sardinia had any notable crime problems. I couldn't find anything except that the island has been historically plagued with bandits - even until recent times! Maybe @Gonariu can enlighten us on this.

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4 hours ago, Astro Noodles said:

What kind of people would play a joke on a harmless amateur astronomer and laugh abut it for centuries afterwards? The youth of today 🙄 They should bring back birching, or national service.😄

I think that one thing that we all share is the fear that some nutter may do us harm, wherever we live. Personally, I feel safer out on my own in the countryside than I do in my suburban back yard.

Same here, I've stopped and listened more than once in my urban garden and it's hardly dark. Out in the countryside with the sheep you're relatively safe.

I'm also very surprised to learn suspenders aren't compulsory in Sardinia?! 🤪

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On 08/06/2021 at 20:19, Stu said:

I think the only time I’ve been afraid observing was whilst on my honeymoon on Safari in Tanzania. They were the best skies I’ve ever been under, but I was far too scared of getting eaten to be able to relax and enjoy it properly unfortunately.

Same here! I wanted a landscape shot and the location of the camp near the Ngorongora crater was great although there was a full moon.  I set up the camera and was pressing the remote shutter from inside the tent. I took a few photos before just getting too scared. No way I wanted to die which fiddling with my ISO settings.  

I sware that later that night I heard purring outside of the tent. Maybe I should have paid some Masai guys to stand there with me with those guns they carry! They would have taken 100s of dollars of me!

The week after we went to zanzibar when the moon had cooled down somewhat. Again I was too scared to go out and get a picture. The view of sagittarius directly above was amazing!

To be honest I don't regret anything, it was an fantastic trip and I frustrated my new wife by taking way too many wildlife photos.  

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20 hours ago, Astro Noodles said:

Ho dato un'occhiata su internet per vedere se la Sardegna ha avuto problemi di criminalità notevoli. Non sono riuscito a trovare nulla tranne che l'isola è stata storicamente afflitta da banditi, anche fino a tempi recenti! 

The big problem in Sardinia was for years the scourge of kidnappings, every year at least a couple there were. These kidnappings were carried out by gangs of people from the interior of the island, often from Nuoro, with a commandos-style operation. The kidnapped was released after a certain number of months, sometimes even many, after the payment of a substantial ransom through someone who acted as an intermediary between the kidnapped family, but sometimes he never returned, as it was for Vanna Licheri , a woman from Ghilarza (40 km south-west of Orotelli, where I live). The Italian state has managed, after many years, to crush this scourge by blocking the assets of the kidnapped and thus preventing the ransom from being paid. The last kidnapping was in 2006-2007, the kidnapped was Titti Pinna, an entrepreneur from Bonorva in Logudoro who, after several months of harsh imprisonment, managed to free himself and escape without paying any ransom. The impious thing is that the Italian state made the kidnapped pay taxes on the ransom, so it was for an entrepreneur from Macomer who had to pay a ransom of 4 billion old lire in the 1990s! The underworld of the interior then turned to the assault of the security vans, not always succeeding, or to steal the ATMs by going against them with a bulldozer; but at this point we reenter in the cases of ordinary crime even if they have their gravity. Years ago there was a bank robbery in Cagliari, which went badly. In any case, if you happen to come to Sardinia, do not worry; in autumn I tour the towns of Nuoro for a very beautiful event called “Cortes apertas” * (open courtyards) which takes place in many towns of Barbagia and no one has ever disturbed me; if you manage to put an end to this unfortunate epidemic, I certainly go there (it seems that they must organize them, let's see).

* In the "Cortes Apertas" event there is a series of villages, starting from early September until a few weeks before Christmas, where antiquities are highlighted in old houses, you can eat typical products and see the monuments that are there in the country in question (Sardinia has a high density of Romanesque churches as there are practically no earthquakes, being a very ancient land), but for those who want to make a cultural tourism there is not only this.

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On 11/7/2021 at 16:28, Astro Noodles said:

Che tipo di persone farebbero uno scherzo a un innocuo astronomo dilettante e ne riderebbero per secoli? I giovani di oggi  🙄 Dovrebbero riportare la betulla, o il servizio nazionale.😄

Penso che una cosa che condividiamo tutti sia la paura che qualche pazzo possa farci del male, ovunque viviamo. Personalmente, mi sento più al sicuro da solo in campagna che nel mio cortile di periferia.

Sardinia, from the time of Roman domination, is practically divided into two: the Barbagie (ie the inland and mountain area), which the Romans never occupied and the rest of the island. Since then the internal part has closed in on itself, there have been some openings and changes since the last century, but that's not enough. The environment is difficult, I talked too much and in 2012, when I was in Cagliari by the sea in July, they entered my house and stole my CPC 8 and Orotelli's Sardinian costume. I bought myself the Nexstar 8 SE used in April of this year but I'll be quiet as hell! I understand your skepticism, I lived in Cagliari until the age of 36, I used to come there in August when my father took vacation all month but it was not enough for me to understand the environment. The rest of Sardinia, thanks to the opening to the outside for several centuries, is practically like the environments that you all know.

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20 hours ago, ScouseSpaceCadet said:

Lo stesso qui, mi sono fermato ad ascoltare più di una volta nel mio giardino urbano e non è quasi buio. Fuori in campagna con le pecore sei relativamente al sicuro.

Sono anche molto sorpreso di apprendere che le bretelle non sono obbligatorie in Sardegna?! 🤪

Well, as an improper weapon you can use either the suspenders or the trouser belt, the important thing is to defend yourself from the attacker on duty!

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