The annual Gatineau hot air balloon festival took place over the Labour Day weekend. What this means is that, if you happened to be biking to foreign affairs at about 7:15 each morning, there were dozens of silent splashes of colour drifting by or bobbing in and out of view between the buildings, depending on which way the wind is blowing.
Hot air balloons are magical – they sneak up on you from behind the trees and make you look up. I’ve been wearing a suit and carrying a briefcase every day, working long hours (I was biking to the office at 7:15 am every day during the Labour Day weekend . . .) and I haven’t had much time to reflect on anything beyond my work. My morning ride along the river, against a backdrop of splashes of colour behind the half-finished apartment buildings, has kept me looking up. And looking up makes me breathe a bit deeper, and keeps me grounded in a world that is bigger than the four corners of the daily grind.