Astronomers are intimately familiar with the concept of "lookback time," a concept that often leads us to liken our telescopes to remarkable time machines. This comparison stems from our profound comprehension of the speed of light and its remarkable ability to traverse vast cosmic expanses. When we train our telescopes on celestial marvels such as the Stephan's Quintet galaxy group, we are essentially gazing upon photons that embarked on their extraordinary journey hundreds of millions of years ago. In essence, we are granted a glimpse of these galaxies as they existed in the distant epochs of the past.
However, this mesmerizing effect of time-travel extends beyond the cosmos and touches our everyday experiences. Consider the simple act of standing face-to-face with another person just a mere two meters away. The light that bounces off their countenance swiftly reaches our eyes with a barely perceptible fraction of a second's delay. Consequently, every facet of our perception is inherently tied to moments that have already slipped into history. In our ceaseless observation of the world around us, we find ourselves in a perpetual state of peering into the vast tapestry of time. "Peering Back in Time" is the theme of the 129th Global Star Party.