One evening last week, I was out running and nearly home when a truck pulling a trailer passed me going Very Fast. I couldn't help but notice the words on the trailer:
CAUTION: BALLOON CHASE VEHICLE
Even so, I was surprised when I got home and noticed what can only be called a "Carnival Atmosphere" in my normally quiet neighborhood.
Because THIS. . .
A hot air balloon (the same one that went low over my house a couple of weeks ago) had made a surprise - but controlled - landing in my neighbor's front lawn, right across the street.
Neighbors poured out of their houses and came out with their cameras. We took turns posing for shots with the balloon in the background.
It's just something that doesn't happen everyday!
After a time, when the Balloon Chase Vehicle guys decided they wouldn't be able to put the balloon UP again (too many trees and houses and basketball posts), they moved the balloon out into the street and let the air out.
I got a bit of that on a video (see below), but I misjudged how big and how close it would be. Besides, the balloon was landing across my front lawn! (I don't shoot videos often, and I was holding the camera in the wrong direction . . . but you'll get the idea.)
It takes a surprising amount of time to take a balloon down and pack it up in the Balloon Chase Vehicle!
Most of the crowd hung around and watched for another hour or so as they rolled and packed and stored the balloon. Tom and I could keep tabs on the action from our front windows.
In the days since, I've been thinking about the Unexpected Balloon Landing event in relation to my One Little Word process this year. Although I don't blog about it very often, I've been keeping up with the monthly OLW prompts and keeping my word for the year - SURPRISE - in my thoughts and journals.
SURPRISE is a funny OLW word. Because most of the OLW prompts and activities are focused on how you can . . .
invite your word into your life
translate your word into action in your world
see the word around you
What I've discovered this year . . . is that I can't really DO most of that with the particular word I've chosen. I mean. . . once you PLAN something . . . or TAKE ACTION . . . it is no longer a SURPRISE!
But I have been able to SEE the word around me. To be AWARE of how often I am surprised. Sometimes the surprise is subtle -- an unexpected shadow, a strange cloud formation, a bird song. And sometimes the surprise is huge -- my reaction to a situation, a new possibility, a puppy!
This is my third year of doing One Little Word. My word this year is more challenging than I had expected, but I'm getting a lot more out of the process than I ever have before.