|Occurred : 2/28/2004 18:40 (Entered as : 02/28/2004 18:40)
Reported: 2/29/2004 10:01:00 AM 10:01
Location: New Orleans, LA
|Star-like object meandering in sky
6:40pm Central time. While outside talking on the cell phone with my mother, I looked up at the moon, which was directly overhead, and saw a star-like object in the southern sky move westward toward the moon. It looked just like an average star, except it was moving. The object did not blink, was white in color and appeared to be very high in the atmosphere. It did not leave a trail and was moving approximately the same speed as a satellite. The object passed under the moon and was obscured by clouds moving in from the south. The sky was mostly cloudy at the time with a few breaks in between to where the moon and stars were clearly visible.
When I saw the object, I pointed in the direction I was looking (south) and said to my boyfriend and mother (on the phone), "Look at that star moving up there, by the moon!" I viewed the object for 3 or 4 seconds before I lost sight of it behind the clouds. I looked at the time on the cell phone and noticed it to be 6:40pm. My boyfriend did not see the object, but continued to look at the sky. My mother, who lives on the North shore of the Lake Pontchartrain (I live on the South shore), did not see the object as she was inside at the time. I then told my mother I would call her back and continued watching for the object, but did not spot it again.
We decided to stay outside a little longer and I continued to watch the sky, which was still mostly cloudy with fewer breaks in between the visible areas.
7:40pm - Spotted what appeared to be the same object again in the Southeastern part of the sky, which was clear at the time. I pointed it out to my boyfriend and said, "There it is again!" We both watched the object move erratically northward, then ENE until it passed out of our view of the horizon. Looked at the clock on the cell phone and it was exactly one hour later than the first sighting. Duration of second sighting was 10 to 12 seconds. When I spotted the object the second time (my boyfriend did not see this part), it moved quickly in a very erratic motion then moved northward at a steady rate, where my boyfriend was also able to pick it up. The general movement of the star-like object reminded me of an insect in flight (specifically a dragonfly), where the dragonfly would hover over a potential landing site, i.e.: stick or twig, examine the site a bit but not landing (or as if it was performing evasive maneuvers from another insect) and then flying off to find a better spot, not in a straight line but meandering.
I then called my mother again and told her what I saw. I said the object was heading in her general direction and she should go outside and see if she could spot it. I told her it was pretty cloudy on the South shore of the lake, but the North shore seemed to be in a clearing, as she did not see any clouds, nor did she see the object.
Another factor that my be relevant, but was not noticed at 6:40pm, possibly due to the cloud cover, is there was a strange halo around the moon (one quarter full) that I had never seen before. The halo was approximately 6 1/2 to 7 feet in diameter from my perspective with the moon being 1/2 inch in diameter. I have see halos around the moon many times before, but they were always close to the moon, never this far away! My father said the halo was probably due to ice crystals in the atmosphere reflecting the light of the moon. The color of the halo was the same color as the moon and a perfect circle. I watched as clouds covered the area of the sky that the moon was located and the halo was also covered. I could only see it when there was a break in the clouds. The object, when spotted the second time, was within this halo on the Eastern side (moon was now in SW sky). I watched the object pass out of the halo and continue on as described above.
We went inside at this point since there were just too many clouds. I went back outside at 8:40pm and the halo was still around the moon, but I could only get glimpses of it through the clouds. The sky was almost completely covered in clouds at this point. I did not spot the object again.
I then went back inside and received a call from my mother. She stated that she could also see the halo around the moon, but it appeared to be purplish in color to her. She also saw 2 beams of iridescent light shining down in her general direction on the North shore of the lake, between 8:00pm and 8:40pm, she's not sure of the time as she was going in and out of the house. She described the lights as being an upside-down v, with the moon being the starting point. The lights appeared to be "bubbling inside" with iridescence, as stated by my mother. She thought the lights might be a trick of the eye or a reflection off of her glasses. She could not tell if the beams of light were touching the ground from her vantage point. My mother said she began to feel uneasy at this point and went back inside. I went back outside to see if I could see this as well, but the moon was not visible.
My mother calls back at 8:50pm and says, "I'm not going out there anymore! I saw the beams of light again." She went on to describe the lights as stated above, but felt like one of the beams was shining directly at her. She got scared and went back inside. I haven't heard from her this morning, but I assume since she didn't call me back, she didn't observe anything else unusual.