Dear Kid,

The planets are still in the sky where they belong.

I know this because last night Dad and I went to the Cincinnati Observatory to see Venus and Jupiter converge.

Venus and Jupiter Converge | Saturn Makes a Guest Appearance | Our Trip to the Cincinnati Observatory

“Converge” means come together. In this case, “convergence” means be less far apart than usual because planets are inherently far apart. Far. You just can’t really plan a weekend visit.

So we went to the Observatory (after a short “discussion” about where the Observatory is actually located). There were telescopes set up outside the lawn outside the Observatory building and the buildings themselves were open for visitors.

The first thing we did was nothing because it wasn’t time to see anything. So Dad went into the main building to ogle the big, big telescope and I went outside to wander around, look at the deer that were helping themselves to dinner on the far side of the lawn, and admire the humidity.

Venus and Jupiter Converge | Saturn Makes a Guest Appearance | Our Trip to the Cincinnati Observatory DearKidLoveMom.comThen we went together into the little building to see the original telescope and learn a little about it. The observatory people were very excited for it to get a little later because they were hoping to use the scope to see Saturn.

Eventually, time decided to move on and we went over to the outside scopes to peer at the planets. Sad face—clouds were in the way. Nothing to see. Wait, wait, happy face! Clouds moved and if you look right here you can see Jupiter and Venus. We looked. Yep. Two round spots in the sky. Fuzzy round spots, if truth be told. Very cool, fuzzy round spots, but round spots nonetheless.

We went back to the little building to see if anyone had found Saturn. Yep, it was right where it was supposed to be (gotta love when planets are cooperative) and the clouds weren’t a problem.

We climbed up the little ladder thing to look out into the universe. And there, right where we were looking, was the most fake-looking planet I’ve ever seen.

You know what Saturn is supposed to look like? That’s EXACTLY what it does look like, rings and all. Crystal clear, plain as day, choose your cliché, there it was and there was nothing that looked real about it.

Except that it was verifiably 100% real.

Which is completely bewildering and completely cool.

Love, Mom