(WKRG, FOLEY, ALABAMA)
This was a lot of fun. I did this once before like eight years ago for a story. That was fun too but this had a twist ending. I was tranquil and beautiful, everything you want in a balloon ride. The only scary part for me was worrying about whether my selfie stick would drop my phone as I held it out over the edge of the balloon basket. In the snug confines of that basket, I was joined by 90-year-old World War II veteran Dean Hanson.
“It’s unreal, you just feel like you were standing on air,” said Hanson. His grandson Kerry was there too. I asked him what he was going to say to his family and friends when he got back on the ground.
“I’m going to rub it in their face, to be honest, I’m really appreciative to get this opportunity,” said Kerry Broussard. The landing was a little rough. We landed on our side. I gripped the basket rope tightly with one hand and clamped down on the handle of my selfie stick with the other hand. Everyone was ok.
“This thing’s almost 80 feet tall it’s about 65 feet wide so it catches a lot of the wind like a sail we lay the flight out to where we’re going to have big giant fields to land in, we just slide it in,” said pilot Tommy Rachel. For more information on the festival, you can check out their website.