Sunday, January 08, 2006

Chasing a Hot Air Balloon in the Mini

Yesterday Aimee saw a hot air balloon rapidly descending over our house. At around 200 feet it looked as if it was going to land in the nearby golf course.

“Let’s chase it and see where it lands.” Jill said excitedly.

I ran in and grabbed my running shoes, wallet and digital camera. Aimee and Jill looked to the sky as I sped through the streets of Chandler.

About two miles from our house we saw the balloon as it attempted to land in a field next to the Holiday Inn. The balloon could not descend quickly enough and drifted dangerously close to Alma School Boulevard. Two long bursts from the burners and the balloon climbed to about 40 feet. We followed the balloon chase team to an empty lot where they again attempted to land …no luck. We then had to make a u-turn to get to a field that was across the street. The balloon flew directly above us by a mere 15 feet.

After two bounces the balloon stopped as the pilot opened the skirt and let out the hot air. As the giant collapsed in the open field a team of men hurried to fold it up. The well heeled passengers were then packed up into a van and headed off.

It was an exciting, spontaneous and fun moment of our afternoon