Once in a blue moon

A strawberry over Thailand.
A strawberry moon over Thailand.

Throughout my life, my mother has always known what phase the moon is in–waxing, waning, full, new, strawberry. It’s a fun hobby of sorts that I’ve come to adopt as well. There is not much to it besides checking an almanac, but once you start doing it, you will find yourself looking at your life more and more in moon phases. Beginnings and endings. Starting over. Clean slates.

Which is far easier than waiting for New Year’s Eve to make resolutions and changes.

A honey moon over Yosemite.
A honey moon over Yosemite.

You’ve got to acknowledge the moon has some pull. Some gravitational pull. The ocean tides are ruled by it. Crime spikes. Hospitals are busier on full moon nights, my friends in medicine say. Some believe getting married on a new or waxing moon is good for the marriage (we got married on a new moon!). It’s no coincidence we call the newlywed phase a honeymoon period.

A harvest moon over Ontario.
A harvest moon over Ontario.

The moon has taken on new meaning for me since moving thousands of miles away from friends and family. Not to be sappy, but I love looking up at a gorgeous full moon in the night sky and thinking about what my stateside friends will see. It’s something everyone can share.

And this Friday night, we’re in for another treat. A rare blue moon.

A blood moon over San Francisco.
A hunter’s moon over San Francisco.

The phrase “once in a blue moon” came about because a blue moon only occurs once every two or three years. The term refers to an “extra” full moon–when there are 13 full moons instead of 12 in the calendar year. There are usually three full moons for each of the four seasons, so when there is an extra moon in one season (like this summer) it is applied to the second full moon in the same month. The last blue moon was in August 2012 and the next will be in January 2018.

Blue moon over New York City in 2012.
A blue moon over New York City in 2012.

Don’t forget to look for the blue moon tomorrow night…but for now, a few links:


2 thoughts on “Once in a blue moon

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