A 25th anniversary present from Louise and Greg last year was a hot air balloon flight but the weather was so crap we only managed to redeem it last Sunday. And what a beautiful evening too! Not a cloud to be seen, lovely and warm.
We took off from a place called Shanks' Mare near Dunsany in co Meath and drifted south west past Summerhill, over Rathmolyon before landing after an hour in a field outside Longwood.
An absolutely magical experience run very expertly by Irish Balloon Flights. No rocking, no wind (you're travelling with the wind), same temperature at 1200 feet as on the ground, absolute silence, save for the occasional blast of helium. Apparently, they said its the largest balloon in Ireland and it certainly seemed that way when we were folding it up afterwards! Great fun seeing the kids running about in their back gardens yelling up to us.
They say that, with your final breath,
the soul becomes released by death
and rises to a certain height,
looks down, then sweeps off to the light.
And as we vaulted hawthorn tangle,
floret forest, sprawling farm,
there came on me the inner calm,
of life viewed from another angle.
O’er Rathmolyon church we lifted,
angels now, our freedom won.
Bathed in golden light we drifted
off toward the setting sun.
Silent witness. All is clear –
if this is death, I have no fear.