Sunday, November 3, 2013

Balloon Tour Over Cappadocia, Turkey

I woke up at 4:45 am.
Balloon tour day - and me and my friend are really excited!

A bus took us to a field where there were lots of baskets and wadded clothes. Men used flame throwers like cannon and the clothes blew up into balloons in a moment.

Although it was a cold morning, the fire cannons warmed us, but I still needed my jumper. Shockingly, there were four Korean girls wearing scanty clothing and high-heels. They were gathering around each other and shaking.
We couldn't understand why...
They were really out of place.

Finally all the balloons were set up.
8 persons each plus pilot for one basket.
And guess what!!
Those scanty clothing girls were in our basket!!
Basket has four corners, so the pilot was at one corner, the Girls in the second, an Aussie couple in the third, and me and my friend in the last corner. I thought this to be a tacit agreement.

But! The Girls captured one long side, taking over their corner and my corner and the pilot needed space, so we had to see the view through the heads of scanty girls and couldn't look down from the edge.

Was this normal? To not think about other people's happiness or satisfaction? To have no consideration?
The Aussie couple allowed us to share their view, but the Girls never noticed their rudeness. This would be a great way to torture a character in a novel. Lock her in a basket at 1000 feet with rude, scanty girls. Maybe a high heel can get stuck in the basket weave. Who wears high heels to a balloon ride?? Maybe they never go to bed the night before, and went straight from a club to the balloon?

Anyway, we flew up to a height of 1000 feet and the land looked like "Google earth". Rose valley looked really amazing even from the sky and cave houses looked like an ant hill.

The fire cannon was just behind me and roaring.

The pilot was amazing. There was no handle but only cannon. He controlled the fire very well - up and down, then he would feel the wind and move from right to left without ever crashing into the rock or another basket. If writing an action sequence over Cappadocia - Balloons can hit each other. It would be very easy to happen. Write it as suspense, suspense, will the balloons hit, suspense, then crash! What happens? Do the balloons collapse for a moment, then recover? Do people fall out and hang from ropes? Does the evil person climb into the hero's basket? Because the balloons move so slowly, and gracefully, it would be like a slow motion action sequence. 

Admittedly, we never felt danger, but a balloon accident happened in Egypt recently before our trip. I shivered from that news. The balloon caught fire, collapsed and plummeted to earth, killing 19 people. So yes, the danger is real.

After sky tour we had breakfast and champagne and got a certificate from the pilot. He was cool, focused and no smiles during the tour, so he was kind of scary - but on the land he was very warm and smiled many times.

We visited some places after that and left Cappadocia. 

◆Pray for the Japanese girls killed in Cappadocia....

Ai Ogata resides in Japan, travels the world and blogs from her incredibly high speed phone. 

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