Ok, I'll admit it. I am obsessed....oops, I mean passionate about three things: astronomy, weather and photography!
Since I was a young boy, I have always been fascinated with the night sky and the natural world around me. When I think back it is easier to understand now why that was. Many of my most fond moments were with my Tasco 50X telescope, instamatic 110 film camera and my chemistry set. I even have a photo of my Tasco telescope taken at the time. Not sure who took the photo, probably myself, but glad I did.
My biggest obsessions were with the night sky and weather....especially extreme weather! I remember my first NOAA weather radio made by General Electric and guess what? I still have it. I also loved to track tropical storms and hurricanes on weather maps and record all the weather stats on the storm. My first weather record was of Tropical Storm Agnes in 1972. I was just 10 years old at the time. My astronomical telescope allowed me to go on a nightly journey into outer space. It became my time tunnel or a bridge back in time to allow me to see fascinating celestial objects like the moon and planets.
I still remember the large lunar map I had. My brother and I use to spread the map out on our father's car along with my telescope mounted on a raggerty table top tripod to observe and locate the lunar landmarks. As we located each target, we would color code the feature on the lunar map. I still clearly remember observing Saturn with its glorious rings with my little Tasco. Believe it or not, I still have that telescope! Now, it isn't the "actual" one I had as a kid, but I did find the same brand and model scope at an antique fair several years back. Wow, talk about flashback and coincidence?
I still remember my brother and I finding any way we could to obtain optical glass and eyepieces so that we could jury-rig it to our little 50X Tasco in order to improve it magnification. Sometimes it actually worked! I used that telescope for more then astronomy. I also used it to look at airplanes and to see how far I could magnify and view the distant terrain. I would often climb the stairs up to our 3rd floor so that I could get higher up. It was like having my own little observatory.
I also became fascinated, like many kids, with UFO's. I even started a UFO Club in elementary school. What a geek! Anyway, my passion, I mean obsession, continues and I see no way of stopping it nor do I want to. It all gives me too much joy!