Thursday, March 4, 2010

Asia 360 - 15th Philippine Hot Air Balloon Festival (3/3)

As I wandered through the crowd on the last day of the hot air balloon festival, it was evident that both young and old had happy memories to take home with them from the event. Their excitement during the aerobatics was obvious from their reactions. So was their amusement as they cheered when face-painted and colorfully costumed youngsters marched and performed amazing tricks to the beat of kettledrums. So was their delight as they clapped every time a plane hit its target in the balloon bursting segment.

There was also a different kind of joy, one I've observed gleaming in the eyes of fathers, mothers, grandparents as they carried their young ones on their shoulders, took pictures of them riding in an airplane, taught them how to fly kites, queued with them to the hotdog stands and portable toilets, and dreamed with them being captains of their own planes someday. If that wasn't rewarding enough, the bliss was apparent on the faces of the children too. I'm sure that those happy memories will last a lifetime in the heads of some, and indelibly etched in the souls of everyone forever.

Certainly there is pride in the hearts of the pilots from being among the privileged few who are able to do what they do, more so from being able to impart happiness to the others in their own way. If only momentarily, they turned into artists who find delight in seeing others appreciate their craft. It must be a pleasurable thing too, to be able to express the joy of flying, without the use of words, to people who will never be able to fully comprehend it. The feeling of being able to provide inspiration to those who aspire to fly someday must also be priceless.

It was a delightful experience for me too, this being my first. I have my own happy memories to take home with me. Just thinking about them makes me smile and want to come back.

I will certainly make plans to watch it again someday. There would be the children to take and grandchildren too. ;)


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