December 20

One of the most interesting birthdays I’ve ever had was in Turkey. We had been travelling for over two months on our bar trip in 2010, and I had forgotten the days. We arrived in Cappadocia a few days before my birthday in November, and immediately booked a hot air balloon ride as it was the most popular way to see the fairy chimneys and pigeon houses. The night before, when we were getting ready to go to bed, I suddenly exclaimed, “It’s going to be my birthday tomorrow!”  Kat then followed suit with, “We are going on a hot air balloon!” Needless to say, we were incredibly excited when we went to bed that night. However, we did not feel the same at 4 am, when we woke up groggy eyed, took a long shuttle to the boonies of the boonies, sat through an excruciatingly long safety video in the cold room by the takeoff spot, and sipped on on hot chocolate to stay awake. Finally, the balloon was ready for us, so we and about 20 others trooped outside to see the last phase of the helium…and I suddenly woke up. This stunning sight was the first glimpse I had walking out of the headquarter building, and I ran to take this picture before it lifted off the ground.