Coming soon

More Fair stories and pictures.

Big E 026 copy

But for now I just have to say…this isn’t October’s Bright Blue Weather. It hasn’t stopped raining since the calendar turned the page!

rainy day (laff4k)

About these ads
Posted in attraction, Weather | Tagged , | 2 Comments

80 degrees in September

WOW! Blue sky and hot weather. Seems like a summer’s day not late September. Near Southeastern MA where I live the leaves made a sudden color change this week.

New lens 012 copy

We are starting to see some reds and oranges sprinkled in among the greens and browns. But out near the western part of MA it’s still very green.

Big E 002 copy

I know this because last week I drove the Mass Pike (RT 90) from New York to Worcester as I came back from the Adirondack Balloon Festival. Now, on the spur of the moment, I’m driving the same route again on my way to the BIG E, also known as The Eastern States Exposition. It is the largest agricultural event on the eastern seaboard and the sixth largest fair in the nation and I’ve never been.

Big E 009 copy

To encourage me with this adventure I’ve picked up Nancy and her 2 children , Alex and Dawn. After all what’s a fair if you don’t have kids to enjoy it. It’s been years since I’ve been to any fair but I know there are lots of animals at this one, 4 H exhibits and the signature dessert, The Big E Cream Puff.

Big E 010 copy

It’s about a 2 hour drive and we made one stop along the way for a bathroom break and leg stretch. The kids used to fall asleep on long rides but as they have gotten older they are more alert. They entertained themselves in the back seat with electronic toys and minimal sibling fighting.

Big E 012 copy

We made it to the fair right about noon. We thought we had plenty of time to make the 1 pm circus in the big top. So we took our time heading in that direction. In fact, as soon as we entered the gates there was an elephant ride. Dare-devil Dawn had to try that right away.

Big E 017 copy

A camel stood in the background and ponies carried smaller children. On the other side of the elephant was a petting zoo. So much to do and we just got here!

Big E 024 copy

Posted in animals, Massachusetts | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

They Call It Moonglow

Moonglow. Not a super moon.

Project 365 Supermoon 022 copy

At the 40th Anniversary Balloon Festival it was 3 tethered balloons glowing  in the dark. The photo that resulted is one of my favorites . The Boston Globe newspaper liked it too as it was featured “above the fold” in one of the Sunday editions.

balloon festival 121 copy

The “Moonglow” was my main reason for attending the Festival this year. As much as I like the photo from 2012, I felt that I could do better. I wanted another try. This year they planned on more than 3 balloons. Moonglow was going to be at the airport. It was scheduled for 8 pm Saturday night.

Balloons 2014 075a copy

There was also a 5 pm launch but as we arrived at the airport we learned that the 5 pm launch had been grounded due to high wind gusts. Disappointing but not a disaster. After all we had loads of pictures from Friday evening’s launch.

Balloons 2014 080 copy

We set up our lawn chairs and settled in to wait. The breeze was pretty stiff and it began to get chilly but we hung in there. We were hoping that if the balloons were tethered maybe they’d still be able to pull off the Moonglow.

Balloons 2014 093a copy

Alas, it was not to be. About 7:30 the chase teams began to pack up. They moved the baskets to the tarmac and lined them up. To a rousing sound track they sent propane flames skyward but no balloons.

Balloons 2014 095 copy

The Festival was over for us.

Balloons 2014 158 copy

 

There was a final launch scheduled for dawn on Sunday but we had no plans to attend that one.

Balloons 2014 166a copy

So I will leave you with a few more photos from Friday night

Balloons 2014 168a copy

And the promise that I will try again another year to capture that perfect “moonglow” picture.

Balloons 2014 146a copy

“Would you like to fly in my beautiful balloon????”

Balloons 2014 118a copy

Posted in attraction, special occasion | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

They came in Waves

2 years ago we thought the show was pretty good but this year the launch far out-shown anything from 2012.

balloon festival 201a copy

I don’t know how many balloons made it up but they launched in waves. You watched them drift overhead and turned to follow them out of sight only to turn around to more balloons lifting into the air. We heard the goal was to get 80 balloons in the air. I think they made it.

Balloons 2014 107 copy

Music filled the air providing a sound track to the spectacle. Each balloon was unique. Bright colored traditional balloons rose side by side with whimsical animals and even a sci-fi Icon.

Balloons 2014 135a copy

Yes , there was even an 85 ft, 600 lb black balloon that struck fear in the hearts of the rebel alliance. Darth Vader himself rose from the ground to the strains of the Star Wars Overture. Darth was definitely the celebrity  of the day. Sadly he remained tethered and we never got to see him soar.

Balloons 2014 131 copy

Once of my favorite images was when a brightly colored balloon seemed to rise over Darth Vader ‘s helmet like a tiny moon. Several looked like they might not clear his 85 ft. height.

Balloons 2014 105 - Copy

Right next to us was large black and white balloon that turned out to be a giant Panda!

Balloons 2014 033 copy

As the balloon inflated children romped in its shadow.  What a thrill to be so close to the behemoth as it inflated!

Balloons 2014 040 - Copy

 

I was too close and then I wanted to zoom in on a more distant balloon. I was juggling lenses every few shots! Now I know why the photography team all hand at least 2 cameras around  their necks. Maybe next time I’ll have that extra camera too.

Balloons 2014 063 - Copy

Posted in Life, special occasion | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

We Have Lift Off!

Thursday night was the kick off to the 42nd Adirondack Balloon Festival and all of the balloons were grounded by the weather, mostly the winds.

Friday seemed to be much more favorable so we headed to the airport about 4:30 pm for the afternoon launch. We had pre-paid parking which I highly recommend! Why? Because it gets you much closer to the airport proper and when you are carrying a chair and camera gear, less is certainly more. :)

You need to arrive early and for ballooners it’s almost like going to a football game and tailgating! There are food trucks and craft vendors. The kites always do well and there are always a bunch of them flying as we wait for the main event, the hot air balloons.

Balloons 2014 008 copy

You never know if there is going to be a launch until right before they go up. All eyes watch the wind socks because wind gusts will put a kibosh on the launch every time. Safety First.

Balloons 2014 011 copy

As I said, Friday night seemed to hold a lot of promise. The sky was clear and the wind sock was limp. Sandy and I lugged our chairs and I lugged my camera and we staked out a spot near one of the chase trucks. We could see a few balloons being spread out and one purple balloon was starting to inflate. There was a good turnout here already.

Getting around is crucial for the ballooners. They have to go to the pilot’s tent for updates and run around on all sorts of errands as the launch deadline approaches. One enterprising ballooner found a new way to get around quickly… A Segway!

Balloons 2014 007 copy

Finally at just about 5 pm we began to hear the whoosh whoosh of the propane tanks firing and balloons began inflating all around us.

Balloons 2014 016 copy

The first Balloon to take off was a really pretty purple-blue balloon that had a elongated shape, not the traditional balloon shape. The wind, what there was of it was pushing the balloon in our direction. Perfect positioning.

Balloons 2014 027 copy

For some reason the balloon didn’t seem to be gaining altitude. As it passed over the airport terminal building toward the trees we all wonder if it would clear them. It did, but just barely, the bottom of the basket actually scraping the top branches.

Not too much farther on they seemed to give up the fight and down it came. So the first balloon up was also the first balloon down. We heard later that it may have had a leak.

But while our attention was fixed on the purple-blue balloon and it’s troubles, the other ballooners were hard at work.

Balloons 2014 103 copy

Posted in People, Travel, Weather | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

Balloons over the Adirondacks

Yesterday was the first day of the Adirondack Hot Air Balloon Festival. Opening festivities were planned for Crandall Park in Glens Falls, NY. But then the rains came and the wind gusts started…up to 10 miles per hour according to the weather reports. So they held the block party but no balloons in the air.

balloons 381 copy

Maybe today will be better.

Posted in Travel | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Just a quick Hi

Hi everyone! Are you still waiting for me? Oh my, you are wonderful! I’m finally starting to mend, at least my legs and back. The shingles continue to hang on. I had to stop PT because it was only making me worse. I was ready for a wheel chair and the back pain had changed. It wasn’t an ache anymore, it was take your breathe away pain. So I stopped and called my doctor who was on vacation, She won’t be back until next week and then I won’t be available. In the meantime I have seen a big improvement. I can walk again, the back pain persists but much less intense. Yesterday I walked all around the mall without stopping! Before I was walking from bench to bench, to rest before going on and I am limping much less.

Butterflies cape Cod Canal 111 copy

Labor Day weekend I had company and we went on a cruise of the Cape Cod Canal. I have pictures and stories and promise I’ll share soon.  The next day we went to the Roger Williams Zoo. More Pics but I wasn’t walking too well then so my poor friend was held to a mere crawl around the zoo as he waited for me to keep up.

Open-Houses-in-Spring-Texas

This is the busy fall season for real estate and I’m am working long hours but it will be worth it. One of the agents I support asked me if I had adjusted to my new schedule. (It’s suppose to be 9-6 M-F) I said yes but I got to thinking how time is so precious.

white rabbit

On my old schedule I had too much time. Oh I had time to write my blog daily but  I was also bored a lot of the time. Now I scramble for every spare minute. There are days I pull laundry out with every good intention and never get a chance to look at it again until 8-9 pm. But I’m not bored!

I expect free time will be cyclical based on busy seasons and off seasons. So I expect I’ll be able to start posting more in another month – 6 weeks as we head into the holiday seasons.

So my blogging friends, you are never far from my thoughts. I always appreciate you and your support! Back soon :)

 

 

Posted in Boston, Life, Massachusetts | Tagged , , | 2 Comments