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Across the sky

Lying back in the hotel pool tonight, after a long day of meetings, briefings and writing, I saw a line drawn across the clear night sky. Bright yellow, the colour of fire, it drew a ruler across the heavens from east to west, a bright flash that lasted a fraction of a second - more persistence of vision than anything else.

It wasn't fireworks from some theme park show, nor was it an airliner, or a rocket launch. This was the mark of a lump of space junk: a pebble, a handful of ice, or just a piece of rubbish thrown there by man. It doesn't matter what it was, it just matters what we call it.

A shooting star.

A fireball.

Or maybe we should just wonder at the beauty of the heavens, something we usually hide behind garish sodium vapours and bright tungsten.