if love is a labor, ill slave til the end
i won’t cross these streets until you hold my hand
I’ve been here so long that it’s time to move
the winter’s so cold; summer’s over too soon
~ “Swing Life Away” by Rise Against
I am afraid of heights. I don’t like bridges, flying or even riding in ski lifts. I have learned, however, that if I cater to my fears, then they just get worse. As a result, I force myself to fly in airplanes and I drive across bridges, ignoring the heart palpitations. I haven’t been skiing for some time, but when I go, I ride in the lifts and look around, attempting to enjoy the scenery while praying that the cables don’t snap in the cold. This past weekend, I did something amazing – I went Hot Air Ballooning!
'Non-boyfriend' and I went up in the Euphoria – the largest hot air balloon in Nebraska. It is red and white striped, very similar to a giant balloon-shaped candy cane. I posted all the pictures on Facebook, if you care to look at them:
The experience was surreal. I admit, that I began to have my doubts in the safety of embarking on such a journey as soon as the balloon was approximately 100 feet off the ground. The wind caught us and we started moving forward, instead of just upwards. The basket was feeling like a very poor substitute for the ground. After approximately 3 minutes of messed-up equilibrium and thoughts of ballooning disasters, I relaxed and began to really enjoy the flight. Our pilot has been flying balloons for longer than I have been alive – so I knew he wouldn’t do anything to endanger us – or his precious balloon, which is not a cheap expenditure.
I never knew that Sarpy County, NE was so beautiful. We saw tons of deer galloping in the corn fields. We looked down upon the birds in flight looking for their dinner. The best part of the trip was seeing how excited people get when they see a hot air balloon. One young boy was so excited he ran for a little while so he could still see us. It truly was a phenomenal experience. I strongly suggest that everyone do it at least once – there is nothing like it.
That covers the “high” of my weekend. The “lows” were not nearly as exciting. I spent the weekend downloading and selling photographs at the Nebraska Ballroom Dancing Competition. While the dancing itself was pretty impressive, I did not enjoy listening to the announcer and music directly next to the speaker. Truly, a jet engine has lower decibels than what I had to endure all weekend long. Adding insult to injury, I was completely hung-over on Saturday – thanks to the Second base Preservation Society Pub Crawl and Bus Party from Friday night. I don’t even remember buying a drink – yet, I must have bought several (or had them handed to me by kind philanthropists). I am too old for those kinds of shenanigans.
While most of the night is a blur I do remember a few key highlights:
1. Made a new friend, “Shuffleboard Max”. He was also my shuffleboard partner, which is a far more exciting sport than I originally thought.
2. Kept myself from vomiting on the bus-ride home thanks to “Granite Guy”.
3. Ran into an old friend from high school. That was actually really fun. I love it when people come up to me and tell me that I have “taped their ankles”. It reminds me of simpler days.
4. We made some money for the Breast Cancer 3-Day! Not a ton – but some, which is great news!!!!!
As a reminder, we still have t-shirts for sale and you can always make a donation online at: www.the3day.org/goto/jtuck
No donation is too small. Truly!!!!!
PERSONAL NOTE: Thanks again, for keeping me from throwing up.
CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: You keep me young.
SHOUT OUT: My sister, Katie, is amazing! She can organize events like no other. GREAT JOB!