We were up tonight with N___ and G___ from Haifa (anonymity requested). It was the first really dark night in quite some time due to the full moon and many hazy nights earlier this month. It was great to see so many stars again - a host, a crowd of daffodils in the spring sky, but still quite cold and windy. We had to go farther up the plateau to get away from the campers who were out for the Pesach holiday, together with their blazing camp fires, dogs, and camp fire songs. Still, after the winds died down it was a nice night.
We saw the best meteor (shooting star) I have ever seen in my life. A long, very slow, incredibly bright streak across about 70% of the sky that took 5-10 seconds, maybe more, to burn out. It left a bight, smoky train behind and a very distinct separate nucleus as it burned itself out somewhere not far from us. I'd swear I could actually see the meteor itself! Toward the end of its transit, it started sparking. It lit up the whole desert around us. And then it was gone!