Oh...took these pics w/ my lowly cell phone this morning (Sunday)...I've seen this hot air balloon a few times...they have been flying around the area the last 2 weekends.
I'm assuming there was a chase vehicle, as no sooner had it set down on the pavement, 2 guys came running up and grabbed the basket. Then one of them grabbed a rope that hangs on the balloon from the top and pulled it down while the others held the basket. Then one of the people in the basket pulled a rope coming down from inside the balloon....it released a large circular vent on the very top (you can see the sun shining thru the giant hot-air-vent at an angle on the top of the balloon). It all looked pretty interesting, and can also probably be quite terrifying depending on where it looks like you MIGHT be landing. And keep in mind these were taken w/ my cell phone camera, which makes everything look like it's a million miles away...I was REAL CLOSE.
Note: I've been a hot-air-balloon once...it was up in New Jersey. I stayed in it for about 150' of vertical ascent, then jumped out (I was on a bungee). THAT was VERY exciting!
TUESDAY MORNING UPDATE
It's a SNOW DAY!!!!! We had a big storm move in last night...started snowing around 4pm (sleet) and turned to huge snowflakes by around 5. They were predicting up to 11" for Colo Springs. Well...we didn't get that. HOWEVER...during the first few hours of snow it was still too warm and the ground wasn't frozen, so all the snow turned to a thick layer of slush. That finally froze during the night, and now it's still snowing (9am) and that is lying on top of the frozen layer of ice/slush. Most of the city (all the schools, public stuff) is closed, as are all the military bases...thus...SNOW DAY for the Mattster!
And sure...everybody out there who DOESN'T live in Calif. is going "ho hum....boooorrriinnnggg". And after growing up in Wyoming and Montana, I would agree. However, consider that I haven't been in many good winter storms these last 30 plus years...so to have one hit while I'm on travel, AND consider that I'm still getting paid to sit in my room and read books, newspapers, watch satellite TV AND drink coffee all day, well...that's pretty awesome if you ask me! I'm in no hurry to head back to my "day-job"...this is all a vacation! Here's two pics I took:
Have a great day, and here's hoping you all get your very own SNOW-DAY!