Monday, May 18, 2009

Balloon sunrise and a tree of my own (sort of)

I was rewarded for dragging myself out of bed a little earlier this morning by the sight of two hot air balloons wafting past my window. I love the hot air balloons. They inject a little magic into a week day morning.

One of the balloons (above) was so close to my third floor flat that I could hear the blast of the gas burner and make out the pink faces of the passengers. They would have been able to see me taking their photo. It floated over the top of my building and, I'm assuming, touched down in Fawkner Park.

Even without the balloons, I enjoyed getting up earlier while the sunshine was still golden and glowy. My living room was awash with sunlight. The sky was blue and cloudless. We are in for more mornings like this in the days ahead. I'm going to try and keep getting up earlier to make the most of them. (I'm talking 20-30 mins earlier, at 7.30, so not really that early.)

A tree of my own

I discovered today that it's possible to sponsor a tree in the Botanic Gardens. For $50 a year, you can choose to sponsor one of four landmark trees in the gardens or enquire about choosing a different tree that has a special meaning to you. The money goes towards the development and growth of the gardens. It's not on the list, but I'd love to sponsor one of the tall, white-trunked eucalypts on the Huntingfield Lawn (below).

If you did sponsored a tree for 10 years it would cost the same as sponsoring a garden seat, which is what I'd really love to do. Sponsoring a seat means a little stainless steel plaque with your name and a personal message is fixed to a wooden park bench. It's $5,000 for 10 years. Mostly people sponsor a seat in memory of a loved one who had a soft spot for the gardens, like I do. It probably sounds maudlin and egotistical, but I think I'm going to direct that $5,000 of my estate goes towards sponsoring a seat in my memory. I'ts not like I've got a spare $5k lying around now.


Ludwig said...

Hey, I am going ballooning in a couple of weeks, and that pink face wafting by your window could be ME!! I shall be sure to give a "yoo-hoo" to you when I float by!

They would've been on their way to breakfast (yum yum) in the Botanical Gardens, because the schedule says flight is about an hour and then champagne near the Observatory afterwards...why on earth did you think I was really going? :)

Jayne said...

What a lovely idea with the trees and bench seats in the Bot. Gardens!

dam buster said...

Gee can you personalise the sign on the seat?

I can imagine what some dirty minded people may say on the sign.....

not me of course!

Frisky Librarian said...

Hello Ludwig. I'll keep an eye out for you! Hope you enjoy your flight. I like the idea of hot air ballooning until I think too much about being so high up in a little, open basket.

They were somewhat off course if the Botanic Gardens was their destination.

Hello Jayne. It is lovely indeed.

Hey db. Yes, you can personalise the plaques but I can't imagine anyone paying $10,000 just to leave a saucy message on a garden seat. There's spray paint for that. The messages have to be approved anyway.

Bonnie Bonsai said...

In doing so, you are leaving a lasting legacy for the future generations to appreciate. Lovely thoughts from you.

Jen said...

I sat down on a bench in Central Park last year and looked at the plaque (as I always do), and it said 'Marry Me (Insert Name, which I've forgotten as I immediately mentally replaced it with my own and swooned). A bit cheesy, but a lovely way to propose to someone who loves gardens. Although what if she said no? Or they got divorced a year later? It would hang around for years. But I prefer to think it had a happy ending.