Saturday, October 22, 2016

We do know what we're doing, honest.......

I mentioned earlier that Cathy and I had been to Chicago. That was back in April and we were going to the International Quilt Festival. As May gets closer, there is a need to just get away for a few days and relax, so we decided to go to Chicago. Now just before we were due to leave, Paula wrote to ask if we knew anyone in the area who could help them on the Magna Carta quilts? She explained that it would just be her and Alison, the illustrator of the panels, and their respective husbands. I wrote and said no, but Cathy and I would be there and would help......

We took the train from Port Huron, which I love doing, and off we went. Seven hours later, we arrive in Chicago, and trundling our cases go off to the subway to get the train out to Rosemont. It was a fun journey and only $3.00 so a bargain as well.

If you have read my blog a little, you will know that Cathy and I have stayed in some interesting places. This time, I booked the accommodation. It was at the Hyatt Regency, as befits the Princess I am, which is connected to the Convention centre by a covered walkway where the show was, and also the Hilton which is where Paula and Alison were, so we didn't have to leave the building and step into the cold - although the walkways were very cold. Anyway, there we are out of the subway, and like a couple of bag ladies, trundling our luggage to the Hyatt which was a couple of blocks. The hotel is interesting, all glass and square with a round turret on each corner, looks a bit like a castle when you think about it.

In we go through the main door and ahead of us are the escalators and a sign with a vee shaped arrow saying lobby. Now, any sane person would have got it straight away, but we are not sane. We blithely ignore the escalators, and walk behind them to find nothing. Just a large foyer with conference rooms all around and a central turret with four elevators.

Having done a complete circuit of the floor, the penny dropped that maybe, just maybe the hotel lobby could be upstairs! Who knew? So, we go to the central turret, and press the button for the elevator. In no time the doors slid open gently and in we got.

"Ok, which button"
"They're not marked"
They must be! well press that one"

Button was duly pressed and off we went. The elevator was one of those glass ones, so that you look out over everything as you ride up or down. We looked out.......... and waved as we passed the hotel lobby.

We got out on the floor we had pressed and sat on the seat in the middle of the elevator lobby laughing, but trying to act sensibly as a lot of people were looking at us. We got into another elevator, and hey presto! there was a button marked L! that stood for Lobby! We peeled out of the elevator and got to a check in desk and told the check - in clerk our story. He sympathized with us as he did pretty much the same when he started working there.

We walked across to the Hilton, to see Paula and her husband sitting in the foyer so it was lovely to see them and to meet Alison and her husband. The next morning we were off to the show. Paula had very kindly arranged passes for us, We had seen the Magna Carta quilts last year at Guildford Cathedral and they are totally, and utterly amazing. I post two photos here which are just teasers, because, if you want to see them then you will have to come to Ailsa Craig next year. As the Magna Carta forms the basis of all human rights charters, it is only fitting, that in Canada's Sesquicentennial year, they are seen here and in a Commonwealth country to boot

A taste of the story of the Magna Carta

There are four Mediaeval panels which tell the story of the Magna Carta, and there are four panels depicting people who have worked in human rights, you may recognize some of the faces, but, I will say no more as I think it is going to be well worth coming to Ailsa Craig next year to see them and hear the stories. There is so much to tell and look at.

The big news is that the Festival will be expanding next year, I just have to remember to keep breathing. We have our juried show in the main Rec centre, the Magna Carta quilts and three featured quilters will be in the most gorgeous century barn and an expanded vendors area. Its a lot to take on, but I truly believe that the Festival has to move forward and expand to grow. I won't talk about the workshops, you will really have to check out the website for updates on those, but I am really excited by them.

We had a really good time in Chicago and enjoyed working with the quilts, but it was time to go home. We left on the Saturday as the train gets in after midnight, and its still a bit of a drive back home.  We took the subway back to the station and sat and waited. Cathy decided she would like some snacks for the journey home, and asked if there was anything I would like. I don't often eat them, but I really fancied a Snickers bar, so off she goes.

She was gone forever, or at least it seemed that way, and when she comes back she is so busy giggling that I am wondering what on earth is wrong with her. This is the reason why.....

Now, if you have met us and seen us do a trunk show together, you will know that this is how Cathy, rightly in my opinion and as I mentioned earlier, refers to me. She just couldn't resist it.

We had an uneventful journey back home but some great memories.

I have been asked about the six foot two Dutchman, so I am posting a photo of him and his lovely wife here, if this doesn't drag readers to my blog for a look see, I don't know what will...

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