Costs, clouds and canines

The sheer cost of anything astronomy-related here in Britain – indeed in the rest of the EU, and I believe Australia has the same problem – is a hot topic among amateur astronomers. Here, there are huge mark-ups put on items by the retailers, an eye-watering 20% VAT (which is even higher in some parts of Europe) and everything costs at least as half again here as it does in the USA. This is the reason why I buy eyepieces when I go to the USA, I am sick of being ripped-off for stuff on this side of the Atlantic.

Therefore I was not best pleased to read on Deep Sky Forum that CCTS only brought along one copy of each current Delos eyepiece to TSP. I had wanted to get the 6mm and 10mm at TSP but some guy on DSF informed me that he bought the only two that CCTS had so I settled for two second-hand Naglers instead – a 9mm Type 1 and a 12mm Type 4. Not that it’s that guy’s fault, it’s Jeff’s for not bringing enough stuff along. Next time I come over and there’s something I want to get, I’ll try to remember to email Jeff at CCTS and see if he can bring it with him and keep it to one side.
It’s even more annoying when every man and his dog is telling you how much better than any other known eyepiece the Deloses are – which is true, I have actually seen it for myself when comparing a prototype 8mm Delos with an 8mm Ethos in Larry’s 36″ scope. The Delos was more contrasty and went a bit deeper than the Ethos did, so if it can comfortably beat a nearly new eyepiece, it would probably wipe the floor with a near 30-year old design.

My dog needs expensive vet treatment next week (an operation whose cost is going to run into at least three figures) so any further purchases have to wait but when the 12mm Delos comes out, I may well get rid of the second hand 12mm Nagler I bought and get the Delos instead.
This reads like a rant but it’s the end of a very shitty week indeed so it is as exactly as it appears, a moan. Things like that don’t usually piss me off too much but I have the ‘back in Britain blooz’ after that great trip to Texas, I have a toothache caused by an abscess in a molar root – so I am having to take some antibiotics and can’t even have a drink – my dog needs the aforementioned vet treatment, which is going to cost an arm and a leg, and the weather is crap…cold, grey and wet. The calendar says┬áit’s May, usually one of the best months of the year for nice weather, but it’s more like November. It has barely stopped raining and the heating is on…in MAY, ffs!