Trial Balloon

Trial Balloon: October 16, 2009 Archive

Balloon Trial

Posted at 5:45 AM on October 16, 2009 by Dale Connelly (20 Comments)

The news of the day is dominated by the wild balloon chase in Colorado yesterday.

It was a real "cat-in-tree" situation - people were horrified by the thought that a six year old might be aloft in a runaway balloon, and utterly powerless to do anything about it. Everyone wanted a happy ending, which is what we got when the balloon came down and it was discovered that Falcon Heene was safe - not in the balloon at all, but hiding at home because he thought his father was mad at him.

balloon.jpg Now we're hearing accusations of a hoax and questions about the wisdom of parents having such a thing in the back yard. A giant mock-flying saucer? I would have played with it.


It reminds me of some of the ill-advised and hazardous things I did when I was very young. A neighbor down the road had, on his property, an old, open well. We would go down there and lean on the stones that made up the mouth of the well and stare into the
abyss, tossing in rocks and other things to watch them fall, fall, fall until the faraway splash. When we told our parents about it, they said "Stay away from the well." The rest was up to us. That was parenting in the 60's.

We should have followed that advice, but didn't. The well remained a forbidden, frequently visited attraction for years. Fortunately, nothing bad happened, but really, what were we thinking?

Was there a spooky / scary hazard that was simply irresistable to you as a youth?

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