One Saturday morning my husband and I were feeling ambitious and decided to go to the gym early. As we were driving up the hill to the athletic club, we noticed some bright colors filling the sky just above the treeline in the distance. It made me smile when I realized they were hot air balloons. First of all, it’s a beautiful sight. Second, I was so glad we decided to go to the gym early so we could witness it. Last, but certainly not least, it reminded me of my younger years living in Arizona and having the hot air balloon races go right over our property. Some of my most favorite memories of my childhood, and they came flooding back to me at that moment.
I really wanted to go to the gym but I couldn’t pass up seeing those hot air balloons up close. We decided to go toward the balloons and try to find out where they were coming from. I had heard about a hot air balloon festival in Salt Lake City and figured it must be that. They weren’t too hard to find since more and more kept popping up above the line of rooftops. Our journey took us to a park that was dotted with hot air balloons being filled and lifting off the ground and rising to the sky. Every color you could imagine was blossoming across the grass and filling the bright blue sky. There were traditional balloons striped with colors of the rainbow. Quite a few balloons were covered with business logos. And of course, my favorite were the ones shaped like animals. I hadn’t seen those kinds before, but a hot air balloon shaped as a frog was pretty darn cute and photo worthy.
I stood in complete awe. I had never been so close to them before. It really added to my love of hot air balloons. We stood there, in the light of the morning sun and watched til every last hot air balloon left the ground. I noticed one balloon on the other end of the park would rise, then come back down. I figured it was having issues, so I watched closely to see what was going on. I saw a line forming around it and realized that people were getting in the balloon and going on a short ride. I imagined what that would be like and my fear of heights kicked in, so I decided to just enjoy watching the balloons fill the sky. The Salt Lake Valley sure is beautiful, especially when the hot air balloon festival is going on. All the colors against the blue sky and trees. Simply amazing.
They rose up above the trees and houses and floated away so beautifully I couldn’t take my eyes off them. One by one they headed south, having no idea where they were heading, we stood there watching them until they were out of our site. I was grateful for our spontaneous adventure that morning. I later learned more about the Hot Air Balloon Festivals in Salt Lake City and throughout the state of Utah. I had no idea that so many existed.