Saturday, December 28, 2013

Christmas and Ballooning

We had a busy but relaxing Christmas week with many friends and did some more ballooning.  On Christmas Eve morning we went with Mike and crewed for Paul, a student pilot, who was doing his first solo.  Even when we don't fly, the whole balloon experience is a fun time. 
A shadow pic of Nanc and me. Yes we do "heart" ballooning.
A few pictures of Paul's flight.  Right, he does his last minute check before take-off.  Left, there is a plane flying near his balloon.  In the center are a couple of obstacles he had to get over in order to land.
The proud pilot with his family and Mike.  This was another different ballooning experience for us.
That evening Mike and T invited us to their home for a wonderful Christmas Eve meal.  They are great friends and wonderful hosts.  Thanks so much for making us part of your family's Christmas.
On Christmas day we had Allan and Sharon over for a Christmas day brunch.  Nanc cooked a great meal and they contributed homemade muffins and fresh squeezed juice from the trees in their back yard. It doesn't get any better than that! It was a great holiday with great friends.
Rene and Suzanne (right) invited us over Christmas evening and we were delighted to find that Santa was there with gifts for all.
Here Santa is giving gifts to Neil, Cathy and Betty.  We are not sure where Errol went because he was not there to get a gift from Santa.  Maybe he had been a bad boy:)
And on Saturday morning it was more ballooning.  Left is Paul's balloon and right is Daniel's.  We were hoping to see Daniel's new racing balloon, but it must be flown ten hours before he can take someone up in it.  Maybe next week. 
Here is Scott's balloon in the air and Gary's being inflated.  There were five people flying that morning.  That is Mike's basket on the ground.  He was the last to take off.
Nanc waving good-bye.
Look who got to fly.  I never get tired of this.  It was a wonderful flight.  Thanks again Mike!!!!
It was much clearer than the last time I flew.  We flew over the local airport shown in the middle of the picture.
We were well above the planes that were taking off.
Looking down is like seeing a live version of Google Earth.  Check out the green golf course in the middle of the desert.
Most of the flight was over residential neighborhoods.  You can always hear dogs barking when you fly over the houses.  Our landing spot is that clear area a bit left of center.  Mike navigated the different winds and hit it right on.  Great Day, Great Flight, Great Friends.


Judy Luke Rinehimer said...

We are jealous! We've flown with Mike out of Chandler and Mike enjoys skimming the soy beans growing near the reservations. We'll see them again when we hit the Phoenix area in March.

Adriane Ryann said...

If you're back in Arizona this year, you have to visit Lo Lo Mai - it's just south of Sedona in Cornville, AZ. It's our favorite campground and quite a few full time RV'ers frequent there. :) *I live in Surprise, AZ which is west of Phoenix.