My birthday is on August 14th but I’ve already gotten my first present. My mom gave me a ticket to go on a balloon flight. So that’s what I did.
On Friday May 14th I went to Beesd with my mom, at this point only Maxx knew about my flight and I only told her about two minutes before we left. So when I posted a picture of the field and the sign, people only found out about it right that moment.
It turned out, the balloon I was in, is the almost largest of Europe, there’s only one balloon that’s bigger than this one. This may be why we were the highest up in the air of all the balloons that went up. We were with four balloons. Two small ones, one with 22 people and us, with 32 people on board.
Our balloon was spread out on the field, vans blowing air into it and our basket was on its side. And as it got blown up, it was really surreal how big these balloons actually were and I wondered how we were going to fit in the basket with 32 people. It all seemed so small from the outside. It really wasn’t though. There were nine compartments. Four on the right, four on the left and one big one in the middle for our pilot. I was in one of the compartments on the right with two other people as some compartment were made for three people and some for four people.
The balloon was full of air and our basket was swinging from one side to the other as the hot air was making its way through the balloon. It wasn’t scary, it was just weird. I thought something might have been wrong, but there were people telling us that it sometimes happened and that it was because the balloon was so big.
And then we went up. I saw the people on the ground get smaller and it was amazing. At that moment you feel as light as a feather. Your flowing through the air and everything looks so beautiful. Not to be soppy, but as the emotional wreckage that I am, I got all teary eyed.
For almost 90 minutes I saw everything, it felt like I could see my entire country beneath my while the sun was setting in the distance. I saw sheep and mills and cars and trains and small villages. At one moment we all went completely silent, the pilot stopped pulling the gas, we were at 1300 meter height. You could still hear the cars, I heard a dog bark, there was a girl screaming all the way down. For a while it was just us, up there in a basket strapped to a balloon, watching the sun set with its beautiful colours. For my likings we started landing way to soon. It was already 9.30 pm, but still.
Someone told me that landing would be awful, but to be honest, it wasn’t that bad. For about a minute I thought we we’re going to hit the ground any second, but we were probably still a few meters above the ground. There were some small ditches in the meadow we were landing in and our first hit was only two meters away from the water. We bumped on the ground about three or four times and then we stayed still. Almost perfectly still. But we were balancing between laying down and standing up. Finally our balloon made a choice and pulled the basket down on the ground, so we all had to crawl out.
Everyone took their picture with the basket and then it was time to ‘clean up’. We had to work together to get all the air out of the balloon and to fold it. There was a cart to put it in and after about an hour of getting rid of the balloon it was time for champagne. Everyone was handed a glass, bubbles were given and our pilot told us the story about the first balloon ride ever. We toasted on our safe landing and amazing trip. We got a certificate and then we headed back to the spot we took off from. My mom and I got home at one am and I slept like a baby.
Sorting through the photo’s was a real pain in the bum, but it was all worth it. You can find them on my Facebookpage.
If you ever get the chance to go ballooning. Do it! I mean it, do it. It’s so beautiful up there and so quite. And it’s probably a once in a lifetime chance. So do it!