Eggs, wine: Uber balloon?

April 26th, 2021Eggs, wine: Uber balloon?

AUTUMN evenings in Daylesford are peaceful affairs at Rob Alexander and Ros Marsden’s Mistover property. So when a sudden roar engulfed their house on recent afternoon, they rushed outside to investigate the menacing sound.

“A giant hot air balloon was floating right over our heads,” Rob said, “and it was clear that it wasn’t going anywhere except our backyard.”
The balloon brushed the top of Ros and Rob’s trees, sending leaves in every direction before sinking beside a nearby grove of gums.
“I was a little horrified,” Ros laughed. “I wasn’t sure what was happening and up close the balloon was enormous. I had no idea that balloons landed on private property.”
Suddenly Mistover had passengers climbing out of the basket followed by a support crew of men in utes arriving at the front gate. The air was so still that the balloon, which started its journey at Jubilee Lake, was not travelling any further than Ros and Rob’s back garden.
“Next spring, I’m hoping to revive writing and gardening workshops on the property if Covid allows it, so maybe the theme will be unexpected visitors,” Ros said.

Rob was presented with a dozen eggs and a bottle of red wine from the owner of the balloon, who commented that it was the best landing spot in Daylesford.
Balloon pilot Ben Phillips said the trip was a private charter and he had been looking for “a nice open garden” to land.
“It often seems like an emergency but anywhere you can land is a good place. We always keep the balloon upright so we can keep going if landowners don’t want us in their garden but Rob and Ros were lovely.”
Ben, who also works with Daylesford Ballooning, said he always carried wine onboard. “It should traditionally be champagne but we find most people prefer wine. The idea started with the first flight in France in 1783 , where they took a gift of champagne in case they landed in a farmer’s field and they thought they were the devil from the sky.” And the eggs? “They were in my car as a gift to someone else but Rob and Ros were so nice they got them as well.”
Words & images: Contributed

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