At some point I finally met my cousin Neil. If it wasn't last night after my parents left, it was this morning, because he was there when my parents drove over with my brother to pick me up and go sightseeing.
SightseeingFirst we drove around the city a little and looked at the various houses in which my parents and grandparents lived in the past. It must've been a real flashback for my parents, but my brother and I were pretty much just taking their word for it. Not like we doubt them, but it's not as real to us because we have no memory of these places, except for the last place Mumsy & Pop Pop lived. And even that place wasn't very fresh in my memory. My brother remembered it a little better though - he's a year and a half older.
Next we drove out to Lucky Peak. There's an earth-fill dam there... my mom thinks it might be the largest in the country, or the world, or something. This was one place I DID remember from visiting as a child. There was a "rooster tail" that shot out to the side from the bottom of the dam. All the pressure of the water behind the dam would force out a jet of water that shoots a good 100 yards or so, looking like a rooster tail. But it wasn't going this time. Later we found out that because there's a power plant there now, they turn the power behind the rooster tail into electricity. They only let the rooster tail shoot out once a year now for old time's sake.
We then drove further to the lake behind the dam where people swim and boat and stuff. I had remembered that from when I was little, too. But we found that there's a vehicle or per-person charge to get into the park now, so we ditched that idea. They must have added the charge because it was getting too popular. The boat docks were pretty much full. That or they realized they could make a killing.
By then it was almost 2pm, so I guess we went to Perkins for lunch before we went to Lucky Peak, not after. I don't remember eating that late. Plus I don't know what we would've done between then and going back to Mumsy & Pop Pops, where we all sat around and lied to each other and enjoyed some great subs for dinner. While sitting out on the balcony, we noticed a huge pink formation growing just beyond the trees in the park. As it slowly erected, we could make it out to be the Energizer Bunny! And it was HUGE! It was towering twice as high over old trees in the park. It only inflated for about 10 minutes and then it deflated again. I guess they were just testing it or something.
Night GlowThat night for the festival, they held a "Night Glow" with about 10 of the hot air balloons, where they use the flame under the balloons to light them up from the inside. The announcer was cheesy but at least he knew it. "I never made it into the Who's Who, but I have a whole page in the Who Cares." My mom touted this as a really cool choreographed event. Well, it was really cool, but it wasn't exactly choreographed. There was supposed to be a "Disco" thing, a "Popcorn" thing, a "Wave" thing, and who knows what else. Well in actuality the balloons pretty much just lit up at random, which was cool in itself. Then they did their "Wave", which was totally lame because the announcer would call out a number and that balloon would light up and everyone would cheer, then he calls the next number and the balloon next to it lights up as the first one eventually turns off at some random time, etc... It wasn't fast enough to be a wave.
What they should have done is give each balloon pilot a device with a set of LEDs on it, one for each balloon in the wave. The LED corresponding to their own balloon would be brighter or bigger or something. Then all the devices simultaneously cycle through the LEDs in order, and then you'll have yourself a wave. Heck, why stop there? You could even choreograph to music using the same notation used for bell choirs. Each balloon is assigned a note on the staff. Of course, then the flame operators need to be musically inclined. But hey, do you want a good show or not? :)
Oh well. After that was over, Rick and I drove dad's car back to Dave & Peachy's to spend the night there. I had the hide-a-bed again, and Rick had an air mattress on the living room floor.