Life is the sum of experiences that we encounter as go through life. Day to day to struggles and triumphs are experienced by all of the world's creatures. As human beings, when we encounter a challenge, we have freedom to choose how to react. Every decision that we make leads us down another road. We will never come to exactly the same crossroads. Every decision the we make has significance. The tiniest choice that is made reverberates throughout the entire universe.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

2012: The 17th International Hot Air Balloon Festival

It doesn’t take much to make me want to visit a place.  It's been last year since I fall in love with the experience of knowing to witness such gigantic balloons soar up in the blue skies.  What was hard for me is finding the right person to join a road trip with me and will definitely can handle the situation whatever happens because this is my first time. I just wanted to EXPERIENCE and ENJOY with not so much expectations, no vivid plans. Just wanted to have fun :)

I have invited at least 3 persons but they all refused to join due to some prior commitments. Good thing, there is always a super friend named, Badet. I have texted her the night before the event. But she told me that she cannot make it in the morning. So hindi ko na siya kinulit pa. But on the following day, on the day itself, I texted her again asking to join me kahit sa hapon, pumayag siya! hehehe. So sa mismong araw na yun, hindi siya prepared. (Hindi masyado). harharhar!

Sorry my dear, you caught quite off guard but I'd never regret that I have invited you, you make it more memorable though. 

Hot air balloon of SM, first balloon which fired up

This annual event is held once again in Clark, Pampanga. Just 2 hours drive from Manila.  Organized by Captain Joy Roa and PIHABF executive director.  Yearly, thousands of spectators have traveled and photographed gigantic colorful balloons in Clark airfield. This is one of the most highly anticipated events almost coincide with the celebrations of the Valentine's day in the Philippines which shouldn't be miss out!

Our official pass. Tickets are available at the gate P200.00

The event started at around 5:30 in the morning and will be jam-packed by visitors with their cars by then. If you doesn't want to get caught in a long stretch of traffic, the best time to catch the colorful Hot Air Balloons lifting up in the sky is to travel between 2am to 3am from Manila. But since me and Badet agreed to go in the afternoon, we had no time to rush.

Paragliding exhibitions 

We were so excited. I don't really know what to expect. I guess, we're both clueless kasi hapon na. hihi

We enjoyed various kites in the air

When we arrived in Clark airfield, I immediately noticed numerous kites in the air. So in nearly 4pm,  this is what to expect. No more hot air balloons. Just kites. But still, I can't help but smile everytime I turn my head up. I felt like a kid all over again while dancing in the tune of the wild wind... Even we're kinda late, it still worth it to witness such. Hindi ako magkandatuto mag picture!!

Different colors and sizes of kites exhibitions

While waiting for the night glow, me and my friend stirred up to different stuffs. Like having a couple of ASTIG poses with the army...hahaha. I was a bit shocked that there were really uniformed army who allowed taking pictures with them. (artista?) There was a band, a few static army displays, booth and different military vehicles. Siempre, hindi namin ito pinalampas. ..papavoom! I wonder if they're all real military troops. Puro sila busy sa picturan eh. hehe peace po mga kuya :)

Clark Air Base is a former United States Air Force base on Luzon Island in the Philippines, located 3 miles west of Angeles City, about 40 miles northwest of Metro Manila. Clark Air Base was an American military facility from 1903 to 1991.

Enjoying the military jeepney

Ang ineeeeet ng time na to though windy.
Suggestions: Do not forget to bring with you the ff:
Hand sanitizer,
Comfortable foot wear
Chair, and mat. (very useful)

Mini Hot Air Balloons worth 150 to 200 each

When we jumped off the bus in Dau, we immediately eyeing to find this miniature hot air balloon. But when we finally saw it, we were disappointed that it is costs 200 for the biggest one. Ay, hindi tuloy kami nakabili. Budgeted lang kami that time eh. (kurips lang talaga). Next time nalang Badet, bili tayo sampu! hehe..  Natutuwa akong talaga sa miniature na to, very colorful, eh what more of seeing real hot air balloons being inflated up in the air, I bet it'll be more awesome! 

Ang dami talagang tao. 
Ang saya ng ambiance! 

For the past 15 years, PIHABF has been an extremely successful events that attracts spectators both local and international. Aside from the display of plethora of multi- colored hot air balloons, the festival also featured a number of expedition events such as skydiving, flag jumps, small plane fly-bys, fly-ins, kite making and many more. 

I wanna try this someday..nyek kailan kaya!

More of aerial activities with different characters

It was past 6pm when we finished our merienda (slash) dinner.
If you worry about the food to eat, well there's alot of food stall in the area. I think a hundreds. Char! OA. Pero madami talaga, kaya nga kumain kami sa hindi pa nakakainan ng mga tao sa Manila, Shakeys. hehehehe. There were actually 50 -plus food concessionaires who served delectable foods then. 

Kites are available for sale kung gusto mo


lt was 6:30 when they started to inflate again the hot air balloons.

Most of the visitors were at the front of the fence already. We just have to struggle going nearer the viewing area just to see a lot better of the hot air balloons getting inflated. This was the time I realized that next year, chair is something very essential to get a better view and picture! 

Initially inflated balloons

Pampanga's Lanterns

They say that Clark Airfield is just perfect to launch such events because the area is large enough and the wind is favorable especially during February. But unfortunately, that time the wind is too strong that made all the balloons deflated.  I think that time there were 3 or more balloons which supposed to be fired up beautifully; so they opted to show us the Night Glow instead which probably bored me a bit despite they showcase some best of Pampanga's giant lanterns. Eh, we were expecting of the hot air balloons pa sana that night. :( 

Next year, we told ourselves to get back here as early as 5am. Best experience if you're with your family and love-ones. Just don't forget to bring jacket and mat to laid back while watching fun flying activities....and most important lesson I've learned, wag makisabay sa mga taong pauwi especially kung commuters ka lang, ang HIRAP sumakay. Punuan ang jeep! You will be suffering from a long walk. So better if you plan ahead. Be here with your wheels. Less hassle.  

Special thanks to you Badet for joining me this trip. Our first time indeed and bonding! Sa uulitin. Ayaw ko na maglakad ng malayo ha..hehe. Bobo moments came in my mind again. lol

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