“The name of my balloon is Pondemonium. I live in Colorado and have been ballooning for thirty years. I had three teenage boys and was beginning to think I couldn’t do anything right. My life was all about boys. I needed my own thing. I started crewing for a hot air balloon. After a couple of years of crewing, the owner landed one day and I told him, ‘You are having all of the fun up there, teach me how to fly’. He gave me a funny look and said, ‘I guess I could teach a woman’. This is balloon number five for me and the name of my team is ‘No Worries’. My husband is a photographer and chases me around. We have been married for 48 years and that is still fun. He is also a musician. I chased his bands around the country for the same 48 years.
Riding in a hot air balloon is floating. Sometimes it is an elevator ride up and down when you realize the wind has shifted. Today the wind direction was wrong and would have blown us the wrong way over the butte. The balloon goes with the wind. You have a plan that constantly changes with the wind. The ground crew has to anticipate where I will land. We have radio contact and use the Glympse app to follow along.
I went up 100 times the past year. With the world shut down for COVID, people still wanted to go on balloon rides. This is how I earn travel money. I have flown in France, Italy and Mexico. The balloons have taken me places I would never have gone.”