Sunday, August 23, 2015

Laid Back at BTV

South Burlington, VT

Libby and I continue to expand our horizons.  Today we toured the Lamoille River using TJ.  It was very pretty.

Yesterday, I went over to the airport to drink my morning coffee.  I was surprized to see a hot air balloon floating nearby.   I listened to the control tower radio frequency.  

The controller was well aware of the baloon and he was warning the airplanes to look out for it.  But they didn't need much warning, the baloon was huge and highly visible.  


After a while the balloon actually drifted over the runway and it blocked a FEDEX jet that had just landed.   But no big deal.  The FEDEX pilot just said, "We'll wait for him to move away."

Soon after, the baloon actually landed on the apron of the airport.  I don't know if it was deliberate, or whether he had permission, but I could see that nobody got excited.

Imagine if that happened at JFK or MIA.  The press would have called it a terrorist attack, and DHS would have surrounded the baloon with men with machine guns.   Not in Burlington though.  This place is very laid back.  

Back in the 90s, I was also listening to the Burlington Airport Tower when a similar incident happened.   The balloon pictured below was drifting over the airport.  I heard the tower controller say, "Traffic is a Boeing 747 hovering over the field."  Now that is what I call laid back.




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