This may sound like a joke, but I'm actually being serious (kind of). When presented with sunsets as breathtaking as the other night, how do Portsmouth NH residents keep from staring at the sun and frying their eyes out?

Train Images
Train Images

I have seen the sun set over The Spring Mountains in the middle of the Mojave desert and watched it duck in at out behind the snow capped Rockies on an evening flight in February.

Both of those occasions seem like a dim light bulb in comparison to the solar smoke show that happened last night from my viewpoint aboard the MV Thomas Laighton.

With all the technological advancements of the last few years, none of the photos that I saw, (and there were dozens of them) did justice to how beautiful it was to the naked eye.

The hazy cloud cover served as the perfect filter to not only allow you to look directly at the sun, but it also transformed the color of it into crimson.

Even though I know its 90 plus million miles away and burning at a temperature that we humans can't begin to comprehend, it looked like a Christmas ornament that you could reach out and touch.

I couldn't pull my eyes away from it!

When I did, the little red dot that it left seemed mild enough to dart my eyes right back at it.

I have an eye appointment in a couple of weeks and will have to ask about the potential damage I may have done.

I just don't understand how you can live in a place where you're forced to stare at the sun because of it's incomparable beauty. I have a feeling that I'd never get used to it.

LOOK: Here are the 50 best beach towns in America

Every beach town has its share of pluses and minuses, which got us thinking about what makes a beach town the best one to live in. To find out, Stacker consulted data from WalletHub, released June 17, 2020, that compares U.S. beach towns. Ratings are based on six categories: affordability, weather, safety, economy, education and health, and quality of life. The cities ranged in population from 10,000 to 150,000, but they had to have at least one local beach listed on TripAdvisor. Read the full methodology here. From those rankings, we selected the top 50. Readers who live in California and Florida will be unsurprised to learn that many of towns featured here are in one of those two states.

Keep reading to see if your favorite beach town made the cut.

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