Labor Day Getaway

On Labor Day, my family stopped by to snatch me away for a little long-weekend trip. We went to Callaway Gardens and stayed in a really nice little cabin in the woods, right at the edge of the park. We rode bikes, walked, went swimming, saw butterflies, watched movies, and just generally caught up, for it had been a month since I had seen my family and we had all missed each other greatly.

One of the main attractions of the trip, other than getting to see one another and finish another season of Game of Thrones, obviously, was Callaway’s annual hot air balloon festival. Every evening, crews of people inflated a total of about twelve rainbow monsters using terrifyingly large flames. The balloons were beautiful, and I had never seen so many all in one place, nor in real life, before. They were fascinating and gorgeous and totally photogenic, as you’ll soon see.

Another highlight of the trip was the ropes course my brothers and I did. I had never done one of those before either, and was surprised, not by the heights or obstacles, but by how much of it I could actually do. I was also surprised by the fact that ninety percent of it was moving carabiner around to different wires. My brothers were competitive and urged me on constantly, making it all the more stressful but exciting and fun.

On Sunday night, we went to see the final balloon light show at the lake beach. The balloons were even more breathtaking than before, once you overlooked the cheesy pop music in the background. In fact, everything about the beach that weekend was a little cheesy—but in a good way. It was like an old-timey, vintage carnival, complete with cotton candy stands, shuffleboard, and over-sized chess sets. The entire festival vibe was contagious and quaint. There were children running about, dance songs playing, and adults waiting in line for margaritas. People played volleyball, splashed, and danced on the beach all day. It was a blast, even just people-watching and wandering about.

Finally, yes, my mom and I finished another season of Game of Thrones. It was season four and absolutely heartbreaking. You may know nothing, Jon Snow, but I’m still not okay.

It was such a wonderful long weekend, full of activities and relaxation alike. We did things at our own pace, did what we wanted to do. We wanted to ride bikes and take pictures and naps, so we did. We wanted to go see butterflies at the butterfly garden, so we did. We even wanted to watch a movie instead of hiking to see fireworks, so we did that too.

I got to see and spend time with my family, who I miss constantly. I got to get away from school and constant homework for a bit. I got to try and see a variety of new things. I loved every minute of it.

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