Post by Lauren
I had read on another blog that the International Balloon Festival was a Swiss event not to be missed. When I found out when we were available for it this year, I was pumped. When Gabe requested that we ski for his birthday (coming up in a few days) in a ski town, Verbier, not far from the balloon festival, I was super excited. I found out that there was even a Night Glow Balloon event that evening prior to our ski day. Now, how could I convince him to go spend the night and to see this?
Luckily he is a great hubby and agreed. We booked a hotel in nearby Gstaad in anticipation. We left Geneva on time so that we could see the balloon kick off. We drove an hour on the windiest road you will ever imagine…covered in snow!
After parking, with hot chocolate and vin chaud in hand, we climbed a big hill up to the church along with the entire town. The announcements in French commenced and the lights on the hillside started…
Wait….does that spell ABBA? Why, yes, it does. The next hour was filled with a light, fire, fireworks, and paraglider show to ABBA music. I made a little video to share:
Then came out the ski team with torches in coordination to the music.
However, I could hardly watch, in hurried anticipation of the night balloons. I couldn’t wait for the bit to end.
However, after the finale, the crowd started to leave.
But wait, where are the balloons? !! ??? !!!
As it turns out, the weather was too bad – we didn’t catch that on the French announcements. I was so bummed and pouted on the way to the car. Gabe joked with me and reminded me how awesome the cliff side light show was. “There were even torched skiers, babe!” he added.
But I was sad. We went to Zermatt last week and didn’t see the Matterhorn and now this week, we went to the balloon festival and no balloons.
We happened to get photos in the cute little town of Château d’Oex as we were leaving. Glad I got to see some chocolate balloons in the window of the patisserie!
Oh well, there’s always next year……or can I convince Gabe to come back after skiing Sunday? You’ll just have to wait and see……