Hot Air Balloon Ride

Mrs. Goodland knew it was going to be a difficult day, when she realized she put her left foot down first, as she was getting out of bed, something she had avoided for 82 years, three months, and seven days. She always made sure to start her day with the right foot, literally, but for some reason on that rainy Thursday, she put her left foot down first, and her fortune started to run away from her.

She didn’t think much of it after a couple of hours, just a superstition she had had since she was five years old, almost a joke with herself, nothing to worry about she was sure. After all, thinking all of her accomplishments had anything to do with what foot she put down first when getting out of bed was ridiculous, and soon she had forgotten about it.

Her day was almost the same as most days for the last couple of years, she took a morning walk, and then she would go buy some flowers, and maybe visit her grandkids; it was summer and the kids spent the day in the pool or taking some sort of summer class, and she enjoyed being with them.

During her walk, she was almost run over twice, and witnessed a bad accident, so bad that she had to close her eyes as she walked away and prayed for the people in the car. During her closed-eyes-prayer walk, was when she was almost run over the second time. She had felt safe most of her adult life, but three close encounters with death (two personal, and one as a spectator) made her realize it was time to go home.

By the time she made it back home, she felt quite tired. Her legs were numb, her arms ached, and her head felt as if she was surrounded by water. She thought that a nap before going to see the grandkids was not a bad idea. But walking to her room, she was distracted by the hot air balloon gondola bar in her living room. Her husband had bought it two years before he passed away, and she kept it because it reminded her of him.

She put her hands in the leather straps, the rattan surface, and the ropes. It smelled like him, even after all these years. She decided to walk into it, to feel closer to him. Suddenly, the hot air balloon bar started going up, but she was not afraid. She closed her eyes, and when she opened them up she was in the air, and her house looked smaller and smaller. Her legs were not numb anymore, her arms felt light, and her head was clear. She was flying, going to see her husband.

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