When I agreed to this cockamamie idea at the village meeting, it had seemed romantic. All I had to do was ride in a Santa-shaped hot air balloon and throw candy canes out over the village holiday parade to the little ones. It sounded like fun! And Joe, the balloon owner and pilot, was hot. He was on the village city council with me and we’d been mildly flirting for several months so I thought this would be a way to maybe nudge things forward.