Back home, when I looked up at the sky last night, all my old friends were there.
Betelgeuse and Rigel, as bright as ever, holding up the entire group of Orion. Then, Aldebaran, or Alpha Tauri. It was taking me a while to distinguish Taurus' horns, so, remembering what my old biology professor suggested ages ago, I looked at them with the white of my eyes and finally made them out. Moving East, there they were, Castor and Pollux, from which Gemini hung like a flag when it's windy. Sirius showed up too, South of Orion, but I couldn't spot the rest of Canis Major; it was too early, and I should've stayed up too late to see all of it. My eyes shifted a few degrees and I wondered, "where’s Canis Minor?”. I could only see Procyon and Gomeisa and I wasn’t even sure Canis Minor was made of only two stars. The Pleiades too floated there, slightly North-West of Orion, in the constellation of Taurus, a small patch of several luminous dots immersed in a weak and scarcely visible nebula. Only when I observed them with my binocular did they disclose all their charm.
Somersaulting so to have my face turned North, I saw the North Star. She wasn’t majestic, and I had to squint my eyes to see it, but she had the wonderful charm of a refined and experienced young lady. Cassiopeia kissed me right on the mouth with her "m" shape for "muah" and I – shame on me – didn’t even remember the names of her stars because they're all letters of the Greek alphabet and I never know which one is which. I couldn't see Triangulum, but frankly I never liked him and he never liked me.
I couldn’t leave without greeting Ursa Major though, but I couldn't find her. So, I went inside and got my stars book. I checked the maps and still couldn't locate her. Ursa Minor was there and said "shhh"; she must have been up to something.
I looked West, and a bright red dot was low on the horizon and just about to disappear. "What?", I thought, "It can't be Venus, it's too late and Venus's not so red". So, I tried to convince myself it was Jupiter, but Jupiter had to be somewehere South. "Mars, maybe? No, it isn’t the period and the position is wrong too". My mom came out to see if my blood was still warm, and she solved the riddle by saying, "It's a satellite". I laughed her back inside in an amicable way and looked the star up in my book: she had the strangest name, Formalhaut. I didn’t remember whether she was part of a constellation; naturally, this is something you wouldn’t say to a lady, so I tipped my hat, placed my voice, and gallantly said, “How do you do?”.
As I did, also wondering how old she might be – but never asked! – a falling star crossed that portion of the sky.
I made a wish and realized it was time to go back inside.
Some of you might wonder, “What does this have to do with acting, or even writing”?
Well, do you know the story of the writer whose wife constantly complained at his spending hours every day looking out the window?
A special complimentary note will go to all those of you who know – or can guess – how the writer always replied.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!