The breakfast of balloonists is propane and champagne. The Montgolfier brothers owned a paper factory in Paris, France. They built a paper bag. They built a bigger bag and bigger bag until they had six guys holding a paper bag. No fan, flapping to get enough air in it then hold it over an open fire. They’re feet got light! So they went to the king of France and said, “We know we can put man into flight.” The kings said, “No you guys know how it works, let’s not do it with you guys.” “Let’s try it with farm animals!” They got three small farm animals and put them in this wooden crate. They lifted it up, and it came down with a thud. They didn’t have burner control like we have today. But all three animals survived so they went back to the king and they said, “We know we can put man into flight.” But he said, “You guys still know how it works, so let’s go to the prison we’ll get a condemned man.” They went and got a guy that was scheduled to have his head cut off in the morning. He said, “If you go on this first man balloon ride, and survive, you’re a free man. And if not, well you’re scheduled to have your head cut off in the morning.” He said, “You betcha!” Two hundred to three
hundred thousand people showed up for this first man balloon ride but they were all dignitaries.
They ones out working in their fields their pitchforks and shovels knew nothing
about it. Nobody on earth has ever seen anything fly
other than birds and they look up and here is this smoke breathing, fire breathing devil alien craft. So when it landed in their field, they took their pitchforks and their shovels and they shredded that balloon into pieces. Out from under the remains crawled Sir
Rosier. He had survived the balloon ride! But if that’s the devil alien craft, that must
be the devil himself. So they picked up rocks So they picked up rocks because that was the way they did it back
then and they started stoning him. The king got there in time to stop the stoning. He said, “Rising up into the heavens was awesome.” “But that landing was bit bumpy.” “Hard on the hips and the knees.” “But that beating part? That really sucked.” So they started carrying a bottle of local champagne that said Made in Paris, France so they
could present it to the landowner upon landing to prove they were from earth. Some say they would lower it with a rope before they got near the ground to keep that beating part to a minimum. They started carrying a bottle for the hip, bottle for the knee, bottle for the ankle. They didn’t have that burner control that we have today. That’s why we always toast with champagne after the flight. And to that we always toast to soft landings!