I never realized how much I enjoyed hot air balloons until recently. I was sifting through some images and I stumbled upon some pictures I had taken at the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta in 2011. Shortly after that, I found an image of a hot air balloon in my inspiration file. After that, it seemed that hot air balloons just kept popping up, so I decided to do a little research... and some stitching.
After reading up a bit on hot air balloons, I came to find that 2013 marks the 230th anniversary of the first flight of the hot air balloon created by the French brothers, Joseph and Jacques Montgolfier. Their initial test of a hot air balloon carrying a sheep, a duck, and a rooster floated and landed safely after a few minutes.
A few months after their test run, the Montgolfier brothers had some human volunteers, Francois Laurent and Pilatre de Rozier, who boarded the hot air balloon and rode it for about half an hour. They rose more than 500 feet and floated over Paris, before landing in a field. The farmers had no idea what was headed toward their field, and approached the balloon with pitch forks. In order to make peace, Laurent and de Rozier offered them a bottle of champagne, which is where the tradition of having a glass of champagne after a balloon ride comes from. Incidentally, the term pilot, comes from Pilatre de Rozier's name. Which I found totally fascinating.
After reading about hot air balloons, I decided to turn an image of a hot air balloon that I have into an embroidery pattern. Now, I don't know where this image came from, but if you do, please let me know so I can give credit to its creator.
The funny thing about all of this, though, is that I have never taken a hot air balloon ride. I am a little too wary of taking my feet off the ground that way.
Have you ever taken a hot air balloon ride?
Until next time.