(IAAC) NGC 2251 revisited

Hi everyone,
	Five months after my last observation of NGC
2261 I was finally able to view it again.  The
nebula definitely appears to have changed.  Some
of these changes are an overall dimmer
appearance, less broad and less extensive base of
faint nebulosity, and a field star that was not
seen the second time.  These changes could be
attributed to different observing conditions and
the fact that drawings probably aren't capable of
showing subtle changes such as these except in
the hands of an observer much more experienced
than I.  Also, I was feeling a little rushed
during this observation.  I started 7 minutes
before the end of astronomical twilight and
finished about 45 minutes later just as the end
of the scope was about to hit the wall of the
observatory.  Some changes, however, I'm pretty
confident about.  These include the dark lane
adjacent to the star at the tip, the very bright
lane next to the dark lane, and the central
lagoon of faint nebulosity.  The feature I
referred to this time as "the bay" appeared to be
a little closer to the edge but was otherwise
very similar to the previous observation.  I'm
still not entirely sure about the nearly stellar
patches in the bright band but I saw them often
enough that I felt I should include them in the
observation.  I've been looking forward to making
this observation all winter because I've never
seen change in a nebula before.  Now I can't wait
until next fall to view it again and see what
changes it may have undergone.
Clear skies,
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