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tumblrbot said: WHERE WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO VISIT ON YOUR PLANET?

Azores: http://www.visitazores.com/

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Click above to connect to my Wordpress blog.  By the way, I emailed this post from my cell phone!

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The best way of travel, however, if you aren’t in any hurry at all, if you don’t care where you are going, if you don’t like to use your legs, if you don’t want to be annoyed at all by any choice of directions, is in a balloon. In a balloon, you can decide only when to start, and usually when to stop. The rest is left entirely to nature.

— William Pene du Bois, The Twenty-One Balloons

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http://www.skygod.com/quotes/balloons.html

Video

Press play to experience takeoff in a hot air balloon.  The shaky camera hand belies the smoothness of the ride.  You’ll notice my cameo, as well. 

Photoset

Hot air balloon scenes

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Get yourself in the cloud

Intentionally waking up at 4:30 a.m. can be worth it.  It’s eerily quiet outside, traffic is light, and the sunrise lends - no, gifts - itself to photography.  I learned all of this when I took a hot air balloon ride in Winters, CA near Napa Valley in 2010.  The flight itself lasted about an hour and covers only a handful of miles, but you feel like it landed too soon and traveled much farther.  The ride was smooth and dream-like, so much so you’ll probably forget that all that separates you from certain death is a wicker basket. 

Also, the post-flight mimosas.  Totally worth it.