Back in July we sailed 850 miles upwind to go see a total eclipse of the sun on July 11, 2010. We went from Tahiti to Hao – a Tuamotus Atoll which just happened to be in the path of the total eclipse. Over 300 people visited Hao to see the eclipse – mostly by plane. Most of the tourists had to either camp on the beach, or stay in houses of the locals. Although, I heard they opened up a dormitory from the local school as well. There was also a large yacht in the harbor along with Tahina.
My crew nearly went on mutiny during the hard sail to Hao. It was a rough ride – sea sickness, 3 hard days of banging on the ocean, etc. Fortunately, I was lucky. We not only got to see the eclipse, we also happened to watch the eclipse with two famous people I happened to already know: Larry Page and Sergey Brin – the two co-founders of Google! After passing my business card to one of the crew of the big yacht in the harbor, we were invited to watch the eclipse with Larry and Sergey! (Read more about the eclipse and what happened).
I managed to take the 360 panorama below while we were preparing to see the total eclipse. Larry Page is just barely visible (behind the lady with the blue hat) on the far side of the telescopes and cameras (he has on his white sunglasses as seen in the photo above). We were next to the Tia Moana – the nice “little” yacht chartered for eclipse watchers accompanying the Googlers. A pretty nice spot to watch a total eclipse! You can use the zoom gadget to get a closer look at Larry in the panorama.