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Balloon Flying Service of Oregon     |     PO Box 3305  Salem OR 97302     |     (503) 363-9799
May 7, 2012
Passengers: Venu, Pranav & Shailaja Thamman

We have ANOTHER birthday surprise flight today it’s Venu’s 40th and I have been working behind his back for over a week with Shailaja to get this flight put together. The biggest concern was Shailaja insisted that we get the flight on HIS birthday and being this is Spring I had some fears, but the morning turned out cool but clear. We met at City Hall then moved to the dry parking lot at Whittaker School. The gang gets to work on the balloon, we get the inflation fan pumping in the cold air and soon we are up and ready to load the passengers. We are off the lot with a nice little drift to the southwest. We cross over Chemawa Road and fly over Keizer for the first half of the flight. We have a great track to the south with just a slight push to the west so I think that we will see the Willamette River before we are finished today. We travel over the neighborhoods in the central section of Keizer then get the hook to the west and we will see West Salem today. Once we get to the river I catch a drift to the south so we can travel up river for a bit and take a look at the Osprey that nest close by. We cross over the gravel operation at Cemex and Pranav really got into the trucks and all the conveyors that were working there. It is time to find a spot to park and my first choice is a new housing area that we have been in before, but as I set the shot Cecil tells me on the radio that the “owner” of the property is “fussy” about our use of his spot so I tell the “gang” to load up and move on. Last time we had permission from a home owner but not the “land owner” of the not yet sold ground. So we move on to a spot across Wallace Road that WE DO have permission, the Westgate Church parking lot a better spot anyway. The “gang” moves to the parking lot as I set the shot and we slip into the nice clean and dry asphalt for a gentle catch. Cecil gets the “Plank” cameras shut down (that is where all the NEAT photos are coming from) and we get the air out of the balloon and the bag sit done. We load up for the drive back Keizer for the picnic.
I get the story started, the toast is done and the certificates are presented.

Venu: “A very pretty morning with a beautiful sunrise. Very calm weather today, it was heavenly to fly and enjoy Mother Nature with the breathtaking views!”

A BIG thank you to today’s Crew (I can’t get in the air or back on the ground without’um)
Mike, Cecil, Tim, Brad

Average Speed: 4.0 MPH
Distance Flown: 4.2 Miles

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