Observatory 1 (Bob the bailiff’s hut)
Gravesend / TQ655 745 / Moonrise 07.19 / 97%
Enclosed in Bob’s Hut watching the infrared camera screen, my eyes going square shaped waiting for these grainy grey pictures to come alive. I’m reminded of those of similar quality, beamed live from the moon in the early hours of July 21st 1969 when Neil Armstrong landed the lunar module on the Sea of Tranquillity. On landing he declared “Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed.” Tonight, coincidentally, it’s exactly 39 years on but no eagles have been seen to land in Gravesend.
Nor is this exactly Tranquility Base. I am becoming a hub of park life here in after hours Gravesham, a friendly doorstep for a quick fag and a chance to warm up freezing limbs chilled by a sharp night air. ‘Have you got a Fox yet?’ I’m asked. ‘Have you caught a fish?’ I reply.