Someday. Probably when I reach retirement age, or if I become desperate to meet women, I will buy a hot-air balloon. I was going to a hot air balloon show today in Sint-Niklaas, but it rained all day. Instead I learned a little bit about how they work. Here's a wee bit more on their history. Also, a team of French researchers based at the Ecole des Mines in Saint-Etienne has designed a new balloon called OVMI to take advantage of solar heating to reduce fuel usage from 35kg/hour to only 7. Not having to torch so much propane appeals to me as a future balloonist. Maybe by the time I'm flying them, they'll use only smoke and mirrors.

Anyway, the thing that I never really thought about which seals the deal as far as loving ballooning goes is that, because you're moving with the wind, you fly in total calm.

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