Meanwhile : Articles written by Simon Jones

This week I was going to write something Christmasy and very seasonal. In fact I did actually start to write about the office parties that I went to this week. But that particular article made me sound like some mad sex craved tart so I scrapped it. Then I wrote an entire article about how I blew my speakers up on my stereo. But, despite being amusing, that seemed a little irrelevant when I re-read it.

However, I haven’t really been one to care about the relevance in this weekly article, have I? So with that in mind I haven’t written anything about Christmas or anything remotely related to this time of year. Instead I’m writing about space! – Well I told you it wasn’t festive!

The other night I was walking home and I decided to take a short cut through the park as it was early and the muggers don’t usually come out till after 8pm. The park was pitch black and no one was around. Normally I would try to get through it as quick as possible, but for some reason this time I looked up and was stopped in my tracks.

There wasn’t a cloud in the sky and in the darkness you could see millions of stars. Now I am a bit of a hippy at heart, and it wasn’t too cold so I found a bench and just sat there looking up at the stars. A mugger would have found me easy pickings because I soon became completely engrossed in the vast expanse above me. I had absolutely no attention on what was around me. I was just sitting there in the middle of the park on a lonely path looking at the stars.

I must have sat there for about half an hour, and I would have stayed longer had I considered it to be safer. It was amazing. There were millions of stars, and the more my eyes became accustomed to the darkness, the more I saw. A few shooting stars and even a couple of satellites crossed the night sky. Miles above my head, stuff that I never usually think about was just going along as it always does, regardless of the time of year.

As I sat there I began to think about the question that we all think about from time to time. Is there anything out there apart from the rubbish we have left? I don’t mean little green men, I mean intelligent life of any kind. I looked out into the abyss and wondered… [Click here to continue reading this article at ‘Meanwhile’]