Last week was the Balloon Fiesta here in Albuquerque. Despite my never having been up in a hot air balloon, I will freely admit that I am a bit OBSESSED with them. When I used to play on my tire swing as a kid, I always pretended I was in the basket of a hot air balloon. When I couldn’t get to sleep, my mom would tell me to close my eyes and imagine myself some place beautiful…it was always a hot air balloon. And for a while, we lived in a house with one of those horrible landscape wallpaper murals. It was a overhead shot of mountains and I refused to let my parents take it down because then I could pretend I was…you guessed it…in a hot air balloon!
So, as you can imagine, Tony and I went to the festival on the very first day it opened. And we didn’t just go…we left the house at 4:30 am, so we could see EVERYTHING. It was very cold and very spectacular. And the absolute best part was watching the balloon fill up with air. Even though it was pretty dark, I couldn’t resist filming it. And Tony did an awesome job editing together a short snippet of it, so you can see what I’m talking about.
It’s like watching a fantastical creature waking up…the silk billowing like it was alive. Then they’d turn the burners on with a glorious WHOOOOOOSH! And the whole thing would right itself…floating upwards. Straining for the sky, until people had to fling themselves onto the side of the basket just to hold it down.
Longing to fly straight up into all that blueness. Straining towards all the things that I want to be. To become. I want that moment when they all let go and the balloon takes to the air. Glowing in the dawn.
To say that I loved the festival is a bit of an understatement. It reminded me that our world truly is magic. All it takes is a little fire…and we can fly.