Monday, April 21, 2014

A Moment of Opportunity Can Disappear - Just Like the Hot Air of a Landed Hot Air Balloon.

Moments of opportunity can be fleeting.  This seems to be a fact that I (the author of a blog about making the most of every moment) need to be taught again and again!  This morning I had one of those lessons.

I was driving to the kennel to pick up our dog, after a weekend away.  On the way there, I pass a lot of open fields.  In one, I saw an unusual sight.

This is what went through my mind:

“Wait - is that a hot air balloon?
 Yes, it is.  Is it real? 
 It is!  
But what is it doing in that field?
Aren't they usually deflated unless the burner is going?  Can it be real?”

I drove closer and could see more clearly ….

“Oh wow - there are people in the basket!  Oh, and people on the ground too.  And the basket is a few feet off the ground!  Is it going up  - or down?  
Should I pull over and watch?  Is that rude?  Would I be in the way?  Maybe I'll just go up the road a bit and pull over.
Oh wow - it bounced!  Now the people on the ground are running to it.  They surrounded it and are grabbing it, and tugging on it.
Did it really just land?  Wish I had noticed it coming down!  Or was this a failed attempt to rise and they are going to try again?  The burner is still lit - I can see the flame.
Oops.  Four-way stop.  Better concentrate!
Darn, now there really isn't a good place to pull over.  Oh well, I will stop on the way back.
I don't really have time, with so much to do today, but you don't see a hot air balloon land every day!
I really want a picture, the balloon is so pretty.”

So - that was a pretty frighteningly honest glimpse into the chatter of my mind, but you get the idea.

I missed photographing a real balloon today, but this ornament is from Albuquerque, New Mexico,
home of the Albuquerque International Balloon Festival.

And now - the lesson.

I was only a few minutes picking up our dog, but by the time I drove back, the hot air balloon was gone from sight.  Just as I drove by the field, I saw a number of people holding what must have been the folded up balloon, and stuffing it into a truck bed.  I had missed my opportunity.  Had I just slowed and stopped when I first saw the balloon, I might have had a different story to tell - and a photo of a balloon.  Just to prove I'm not a slow learner though, I have found an opportunity in my missed opportunity.  I hope I can use the memory of this event as a reminder to be more ready to act on opportunities as they occur.

I do wish I had a photo of that beautiful balloon to post here today though!

What moments of opportunities have you missed?
Have you ever turned a missed opportunity into an opportunity?


  1. Loved this post. I'm SO guilty of rushing through the day and planning my "to do" list that I often forget to stop and enjoy the right now. Thanks for reminding me!

    1. Glad you liked it! Funny how an idea for a post can happen at any moment of the day!

  2. I would have loved to see the balloon too. They have beautiful designs.

    The moments huh...

    It is true that sometimes we miss them, but I think you were right there. some people would be listening to music and not looking outside, or God forbid, even texting!

    For right now I'm so concentrated on the moments that I am not even sure which ones I'm missing :)
    I hope it is NOT the important ones :)

    1. I like your take on this Colette. Maybe it is not so much about missing moments, but appreciating every one that we do have! And judging from the content of your blog - I don't really think you are missing too many important ones! :)

  3. I am so scared of heights watching hot air balloons from the ground is my favorite spectator sport. The hubs has a friend that would take all of the family up. No thank you, at least not yet. Great post Susan.

    1. Thanks Jen! I've never been up in one either!


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