Sunday, October 9, 2016

Up, Up and Away

October 9, 2016
Balloon Fiesta RV Park
Albuquerque, New Mexico

I had not realized it had been so long since I had posted to my blog so will try for a quick update.  When we left Indiana, we headed straight to Rochester, MN to visit friends and family.  We enjoyed several weeks there filled with family activities and visits with friends.

After Minnesota, we headed to Albuquerque, NM for the annual Balloon Fiesta.  We have been here since September 28th and will leave tomorrow for home in Casa Grande, AZ.  We are staying on the Balloon Fiesta property with it's close up view of everything but it also means we are in the direct path for a landing zone.  Last year someone lost a satellite dish when a balloon flew too low over the RVs before landing in the adjacent field.

When we crew, there isn't much time or energy for other activities or keeping up with my blog.  We start at 4:30 am and many days we didn't get back to the RV until after 9:00 pm.

This is a photo of the "Dawn Patrol" getting ready for takeoff.  These balloons launch before dawn and collect the wind data that the other pilots receive at their early morning briefing.

This year we crewed for "Squirt" the fire hydrant. While it is cute, it is also very large (over 120 feet tall).  The fabric part of the balloon alone weighs over 600 pounds.  It's way too much work for these old bodies!  I'm not sure if it was intentional but our launch site was right next to a dog balloon.

 Notice the people standing inside this balloon before it "went hot".

We have had a great time at the Fiesta and have enjoyed renewing old friendships and creating new memories.  Tomorrow morning we will leave for home so I will probably not blog again until the next time we leave home for a new adventure.