The Fall Event

Today I attended the rehearsal for the Very Impressive Fall Event with which I am involved/am participating in/requires practice!
I cannot begin to explain how exciting it was. (I'm not the type to use a lot of exclamation points!)
At 11:00 this morning, 16 of my co-workers and I gathered in a parking lot some distance from my home.
We were warmly welcomed by the staff and given special sweatshirts and offered donuts and warm drinks (it's cool here!) and given instructions.
A large crowd was gathered around us (a thousand people? possibly!) and we listened intently to the rules:
Rule number one: never wrap your string around any part of you.
Rule number two: always listen to your pilot.


We received gloves to protect our hands and did some exercises to limber up.

learning the signals

We learned the signals for Going Up, Speed Up, Reel It In and Stop.

And then we took our positions.

My pal KT and I weren't as fast as some other people and ended up with a foot!



My Very Impressive Fall Event is walking with a balloon in the Thanksgiving Parade!
(No, I cannot believe it either!)
I was asked in August and accepted as I thought it was too interesting an offer to pass on. But, now that I've been trained and have walked with a real live house-sized balloon, I cannot even explain how excited I am.
KT and I held on for dear life and had a pilot all to ourselves as our position in the balloon handling turned out to be very important.
It was very hard work!
(In truth, neither of us makes the weight limit for handling a balloon of this size and we were warned that we would be responsible for holding 100 pounds! They were not kidding.)
We laughed and screamed with delight and swung wide with each turn, as we were told.
Our arms were aching with exertion and our faces hurt from smiling so hard.
I don't have any pictures from during the training as I could not possibly let go of my "bone" though we were told that, in the event of a serious problem, we could do just that: just let go of the balloon.
At the end of the practice we were laughing and jumping and congratulating ourselves on a job well done but our work was not over...we had to help with the deflating of the balloon which was nearly as much fun as walking with it.



That's my beloved work-pal, KT, giggling as the balloon deflates around her.

And these?


These are the Balloon Executives chatting with my boss.
At the end of their conversation they asked who was on the foot of the balloon and then congratulated KT and me on our fine work!

I can barely wait until the actual parade.
(I'll be wearing a red jumpsuit!)


Jen on the Edge said…
Oh my gosh, that is SO exciting! I can't wait to hear about it afterward.
Crazy Mom! said…
Cool!!! Is it The Wimpy Kid? Looks like it could be....
Brigindo said…
That is very cool. I am impressed.


So cool!!!
Scot said…
EXCELLENT! And it sounds like you won't have to spend the holiday in the kitchen - an added bonus!
That One said…
The Macy's parade is a must-view at my house on Thanksgiving. I'll be sure to look for the red jump-suited balloon handlers(or whatever you lot are called).
Anonymous said…
I'm putting this on my calendar. Srsly.
KPB said…
It's like you go, 'well that's left field' and then go hurtling in that direction.

What a strange and exciting creature you are.
KPB said…
And I have the temperature in Tuvalu on my phone and man, it's cold over there already!
Anonymous said…
I think you lead a charmed life!
Excited and happy for you, bb. What fun!

barbra said…
Wow, that's so cool!
Paola said…
I never know what to expect next from you.
This is adorable, and I truly wish I could come and see you in person.
It sounds fantastic!!!
I'll be there in spirit.
Kim? I have Tuvalu's weather station on my desktop too ... AND Euro/$ daily exchange ...
That is so cool!!

Wear heavy boots. They'll help weigh you down. I'll look for you on TV.
Caro said…
How fun! What an exciting opportunity.
Badger said…
What?! THE parade? The MACY'S parade? The one on the television?! We watch that every year! OMG. I am totally recording it this year. This is the most exciting thing that has ever happened to anyone I have ever known! (I am excluding the birthing/adopting of children, etc., obviously.) SO COOL.
Duyvken said…
So cool!
What footwear does one team with a red jumpsuit?
Mary said…
Makes me want to fly over SO badly!
Anonymous said…
This would have to be pretty high up on the Top Ten List of Things That Would Never Occur To Me To Even Think Would Be Fun That Actually Really Are Super Fun!

Hooray for you and KT and your colleagues at the Job in the Big City. And for your arm muscles.

Anonymous said…
I'm even more thrilled for Thanksgiving day now!
kt said…
Wow! Jealous here! We'll wave at you!
Lifeofkaylen said…
This is so cool!! I always wondered who all those people are at the end of the strings and how on earth they came to be attached.
--V said…
I'm going to have to turn on the parade and take the batteries out of the remote on Thanksgiving. Just so I know which balloon to look for, is that an Animaniac? That's my best guess from the photos: the colors, the feet, and the tail (especially the tail) make me think so.
--V said…
Okay, scratch that guess. I googled some images of the animaniacs, and I'm not even close.