However, that did remind me that I needed to test a couple of 2nd hand lenses I'd acquired earlier in the day, so plonked one on the camera and headed outside. After 8 minutes and a few shots, I looked behind me and saw an obvious diffuse object near Orion, which I initially assumed was a small cloud ... or a comet ... and then I realised it could be the Mars-bound spacecraft. I hastily turned the camera round, took a quick snap - and was astonished at what was recorded - then got the exposure settings correct and the camera aimed properly, and started snapping away with an automatic interval timer. I kept going until about 5 minutes after I'd lost sight of it in binoculars. I wish I'd seen it sooner, or had just ignored my feeling that it wouldn't have been visible, and actually LOOKED for it! Still, what I recorded seems to have been unique, as there are so far no other reports of anyone else photographing it leaving Earth orbit. A couple of guys have photographed it much further out, but without the exhaust plume that was visible over Australia. Even NASA seems to have been interested in what I saw. Here's just one image, also showing three orbiting satellites passing by; click the image for more pics and timelapse videos.