Monday, January 10, 2005

Pie In the Sky

"The Not-So-Great Balloon Chase " by Wes Aldridge

Today was exciting. I looked out the window of the photo department at our Franklin-based magazine publishing company and saw a sight that hasn't danced around since Christmas: sunshine.

I said, "Hey Coach, let's just go out and shoot something for the heck of it, its nice outside." Coach, or my boss, Journal Communications Inc. Chief photographer Greg Emens said, "What time you got?" I said 3:27 p.m. He said, "Ok, you've got roughly 30 minutes. Go out and find a shot for your blog and be back here by 4 p.m."

I almost exploded from the excitement shooting through my body, adrenaline pumping fiercely. I said, "rock on," grabbed my camera bag, threw on my RayBans and bolted out the door. Here it was, an unanticipated and pretty freakin' tight deadline assignment. And you better get done what Big Ol' Boy Greg asks you to do, if you know what I mean.

I jumped in the Jeep and started pulling out of the parking lot and thought, "Jeez, where am I gonna find a shot that fast." Before I even had a chance to fret, I looked in the sky and what did I see off in the distance? A hot air balloon. Well, only one thing to do now... chase that sucker.

And I did chase it, through Cool Springs and into Franklin. Up and down Mack Hatcher Parkway and through side roads and neighborhoods until I was almost directly under it... but I was still a little off center. That is when I took the urge to take the Jeep into an empty field that the balloon was floating over. Hey, big deal, I was on deadline, right? As you can see, I got right under the balloon and got the shot, and didn't even get arrested for trespassing to boot! What a rockin' day. Did I mention that I am addicted to this photo thing?