And now the totally inexplicable, meaningless, yet true (and who would care one way or the other?) experience of my return trip. Along the same stretch of road I wondered what had happened to the balloon and looked off the direction it had flown. I saw nothing at first, and then about a quarter mile in front of me, as though it had been waiting to ambush me, the balloon floated up out of the side gully of the highway, the Mickey face pointed directly at me, like a big "Here I am!" The balloon rose slowly to about fifteen feet off the ground, and then descended slowly again, perfectly poised, always facing me, until it disappeared below the brim of the road. It was quite like a surreal bit of cgi finely crafted by a team of digital artists, but it somehow had just happened, by chance, in nature.
This is the sort of weirdness I live for!