How wet is your field? What a welcome to 2014 its been so far. Apart from a rustle of balloons at the Icicle there have have been very few flights so far this year in Great Britain. Abroad its been a bit better with visiting Brit balloonists getting a fair few flights in. Well best get the introduction out the way before I go into how wet and windy its been here (and still is) so you have arrived at Easy balloons a company that looks after the continued airworthiness of balloons here and in the kingdom of Europe. That’s done then. We have been rather striking things of the ‘to do’ list of late so haven’t got around to finishing any articles for this edition sadly but be assured some will be up in a week or so. Must be a result of the flurry last time out mind you we are off to the re-opening of the Oxford University Natural History museum at sparrow’s on Saturday so that will get a write up! News on the workshop is that we are going to go ahead bite the bullet and build a new one. We have been in a bit of a dilemma with what to actually do but we will try and stay put for as long as possible by appealing to our lovely treasured government people to use a bit of their promised influence. In the meantime lobbing stuff out and stuffing it on eBay is the current sport. We also intend to flog some of our excess balloon stuff to raise funds but not our new ’56 which will be airworthy as soon as the tide goes out.
In the news isn’t very much but I guess that’s more to do with the weather and quiet market but things are starting to move and a few rather exciting balloon meets have now been announced and confirmed not least the celebration of 30 years of the 3.4.40 Region. They meet at The Doghouse Hotel near Abingdon and the gathering will most likely include a lot of vintage and veteran balloonists rolled out in bathchairs and various. Its set to run over the weekend of the 24th to 26th May so pass the word please. As we were currently trying to decide what to run on the Ride It Drive It Day this year we suddenly thought we’d add Fly It to it so watch this space. There must be oodles of balloonists and balloonists’ chums with old and rusty vehicles that we could get to join in. We are pleased to report the hit list on the website seems to be going from strength to strength with some rather surprising interest in articles we really put together out of personal fascination rather than any perceived public interest but numbers like the Amazing Pobjoy, Electric Locos and the Allen Scythe continue to gain in popularity. Nearly forgot the balloon stuff receives equal interest I’m pleased to say.
Over the road the round-to-it department continues to flourish. The original Piaggio ping-ping has had a set back so awaits attention and has been replaced by a low-mileage blue 150cc one which seems to keep getting punctures. The Velocette that we have in is now being sorted into neat piles of bits and the rebuild of the wheels underway so more on that as things progress. Dicky down the road’s garage currently has a pile of Lambretta in it which is now an abandoned project as so many bits are missing and the engine is from a much later machine so that’ll go on eBay in due course to make way for the Velo. We nearly managed to give away the Mobylette frame but the bloke lived north of Huddersfield so we had to admit it wasn’t worth the diesel! We are planning to be closed from Monday 17th (not that we are officially open on Mondays) until Thursday 20th February. The mobile should be back on on Friday, leave a message or drop an email. We are off to jolly Francais to drink Calvados. Front page this time is courtesy Andy Rawson and features mountain goats Lucius Peart and Jon Rudoni about to go for a run up a mountain presumably with trainers fitted with snow-chains. Rudoni told us that he didn’t see any other joggers out and about in Chateau d’Oex! In the meantime thanks for calling in and we hope you are not flooded out or have been blown over. Our best wishes John, Jane, Alice Chris and Dotty.