They say some things are just impossible and other things are just impractical. I would say this is one of those impractical things. I never thought about riding in a blimp until the opportunity presented itself and I am so lucky it did. All thanks to Hendrick's Gin, their team, and my amazing boyfriend, Christian Becerra. A lot of things led up to this moment including miscommunication, bad weather, and an instameet but all these things (as unfortunate as they were for the people who encountered them or had previous obligations) led to me and wasn't I lucky.
The blimp itself looked like a giant flying cucumber which is how it received its commonly known hashtag #flyingcucumber. Green on each side with a giant eye placed near the carriage and a painted banner reading Hendrick's Gin. It is not to be confused with the Hulk after all, it weighs a lot less; however both are filled with a lot of hot air. The passanger carriage located at the bottom can fit up to three-four people plus the pilot comfortably but thankfully it was just Christian and I alongside the pilot for this ride. The team on the ground is just as important at the person who flies the blimp itself. Without them, landing is not possible because the blimp would remain hovering and bounce (and possibly blow away) because it needs to be attached to a stationary mount.
All the work that goes into attending a blimp, let alone flying one, never crossed my mind before and it is so interesting to see it all in action. Especially the pilot. To fly the air craft you have to know many things but one of the most interesting are the controls. The left and right seem pretty simple. You use foot pedals, kind of like in a car, and the up and down motion is controlled by wheels attached to the pilots chair, very much resembling a wheelchair.
The whole experience made this flight amazing in more ways than one, however, I must say the topper on the cake was seeing San Francisco from new heights as well as one of the towns I grew up in and went to High School. San Francisco is one of my favorite cities in the world. It has so many beautiful views and spots to see and the people are fascinating, overall it is different than any other place. It is a melting pot as they say and I can never get enough.
Looking at it from a view I have never seen before made it only more special and unique. You almost feel as if you can pick up the city like little building blocks from a train set. Yet, too big to pick up all at once. As I might add seeing it right before golden hour (sunset) was delightful. The light pastel colors layered the city, almost like frosting, with bright yellows and pinks. It looked so soft and warm, even though I was personally freezing from the window in the blimp being open for Christian and I to get pictures without a crazy reflection. I might add the noise is so loud. You can't seem to hear anything but the workings of the blimp which is why we wore headphones to communicate with one another.
Overall, this experience was one of a kind and worth every second. Even though I got "blimp sick" only twenty mins in because you feel as if you are on a boat ride with a storm about hit. The whole ride being a little over two hours was quite the experience and I could not have been happier. Learning so many new things and getting a chance to see San Francisco from the sky had me on my toes. I loved it and will now check blimp ride off my list of once in a lifetime experiences. Thank you all for reading, I'll be seeing you... Vroom Vroom!