Ever since I can remember I have always wanted to see the Northern Lights. Aurora borealis – even its name seemed magical and mysterious, almost like a fairy tale. I lived too far south, and in a city polluted with light, to be able to see it even with solar flares. All I could do is look at pictures, watch documentaries, and hope. When I talked to my friends about it they would say that the colors in photographs of the northern lights were exaggerated and that human eye can only see a tiny splash of color across the sky, nothing else. This didn’t discourage me, though, I just knew I had to experience it myself. I was prepared to be disappointed, and when I first saw the aurora in November 2015 it really was just a faint green smudge across the sky, it moved for a few minutes and disappeared. I was happy – I saw the Northern Lights! I could tell people it was amazing and be content with what I saw. Then came the New Year’s Eve 2015 and I realized how wrong a person can be. What I saw two months before was nothing compared to what happened on that night. The whole sky was covered in splashes of intense colors. It was like looking at a watercolor painting that’s constantly changing. All the elements are moving and adjusting, switching places, shapes and hues. It was a truly magnificent spectacle. I have seen a few shows like that later as well, but I will never forget the first one. It’s not something you forget.
The Sun lives in cycles that last around 11 years, right now we are in a cycle that’s started in 2008 and the highest solar activity was seen in 2011 and 2014. That means that the next cycle will begin around 2019 and we can expect the peak around 2022, more or less. Take it as a tip if you ever want to see the most amazing show on Earth and perhaps take a trip a bit further north.