05 April 2006

the uber-Akron experience

It's not too often that I start my morning by riding in a dirigible. Ok, never.
Except today. I rode in a Goodyear blimp. How Akron am I?


My friend won the ride in a raffle about three years ago and invited me to join her. Because of the whims of weather and the blimps' travel schedule (yeah), it's difficult to schedule a ride. Plus, the aircraft only accomodates six riders at a time.

me, window

So we flew over Akron. It was like what I imagine riding in a small plane would be like. Except it's a lot slower, which more easily facilitates taking photos. To me, that was the best part--taking in and recording views I rarely see.

snow cap bldg

parking lot full

Blimps are kind of like the bumbling, awkward kid who can't seem to get much right. People feel sorry for him and eventually find a not-so-integral task for him to do to help him feel significant.


You can read about the history of blimps here. Basically, now, they fly around and look important. Fortunately—for Goodyear—their uniqueness has bestowed upon them a celebratory status, at least in Akron where people like to be reminded that things were good here once, that Akron created something.


(Northeast Ohio represents. Blech.)

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