are times that I find myself driving along a certain stretch of
road near my home. And every so often, as the road rises and falls
ever so slightly along hills and imbalances, I get just the right
view of the small town ahead. More often than I care to admit,
I see a hot air balloon rising just behind the center of town.
hot air balloon? More often than I care to admit?
Because it isn’t a hot air balloon and it isn’t rising into the
a water tower. Just so happens to be situated in a place where
it clears the tops of surrounding trees. And in just the right
sunlight, at just the right point on the main road, for an approaching
driver the top of the water tower looks exactly like a balloon
first time I spotted my rising balloon, I was actually out running
an errand but had no reason to watch the clock. My morning had
no plans that required me to ne in a certain place at a certain
time, and the store would be open for hours.
new to the neighborhood, I was still getting my bearings. Where
does this road lead? Where does that road lead? Where do these
roads connect? Normal stuff.
hot air balloon, for whatever reason, just created an immediate
feeling of peace and happiness. I can hardly find better words
to describe it than saying simply of my reaction: “Oh look, a
balloon.” Yes, that works nicely.
in place, I began thinking about chasing the balloon for a bit.
I mean… you know… if I could figure out a way to get a bit closer.
And maybe there was more than one. Maybe it was an early morning
launching of several balloons.
so, as I continued my way along the road, I tried to keep sight
of the balloon. But it was proving impossible. The trees near
it were not the trees on the road near me as my car rose and fell
ever so slightly. It didn’t clear all the trees, and my views
were obstructed. And the closer I got to town… and closer I thought
to the balloon… the less I saw of it.
it wasn’t until two or three days later, as I drove the same way
at around the same time and saw the same rising balloon that it
began to occur to me that perhaps it wasn’t moving at all. That’s
when I realized… water tower.
bit of time. A slightly better view. Reality arrives.
near Mount St. Helens, there are trees growing so straight it
blurs your vision. An amazing natural beauty to experience. They
are, in so many fascinating ways, almost too perfect.
around our world, in ways both big and small, there are things
surrounding us that simply aren’t what they appear to be. And,
in some cases, may not be there at all. But we see them. We are
in many ways inspired by them and awestruck by them. And yet…
poof… not there.
during a morning drive… with nothing else to do… still pretty