To children the world is full of magical events, and the line between make-believe and reality is (happily) distinctly blurred. However, as we all age and have to be realistic, earn money, become serious and responsible adults (yawn ) and accept that life is short and no one is immortal, those magical events fade and die. We accept that the worlds of make-believe are simply a product of the vivid imagi- tions of great story tellers, and that we are all very similar human beings; just sl- ging away at the tedious day job, and hoping for a win on the lottery. However, there are still a few events which are truly magical and, for me, total solar eclipses (TSEs) are about as magical an event as you can ever experience. Our Earth and Sun are, by a ludicrously lucky coincidence (or, some would argue, by a cosmic architect) almost the same apparent size in the sky. Thus, seventy times a century, the Moon's shadow passes over a narrow band on the Earth's surface and, for those on the track, with clear skies, a truly awe-inspiring sight can be seen. But be warned, eclipse chasing is an addictive drug. Once you have seen tot- ity, you will crave more of the same. The sight of an eclipsed Sun is the stuff of science ?ction, but, for the cost of a plane ?ight or an organized holiday, it can be yours, albeit for a few ?eeting minutes.