Tuesday, 18 May 2010

New York and the End of the Tour



Off back to New York for our last days via the Hamptons and then Amityville, where the movie ‘Amityville Horrors’ was set, which Alba knew all about and insisted we find the scary house from the movie. After which we set off to our apartment in the West Village. Then we had a great meeting with Erica Wilson the doyen of American Embroiderers and she agreed to be Patron of the School, that crowned of a wonderful trip and meeting all those students, teachers and embroiderers I believe that embroidery is alive and well in the USA and for that I thank you all, and see you again on my next trip in 2012.

Rhode Island

Then the long trip set off on early Sunday morning as we made our way down to St. Louis on a small plane with Alba having a nervous attack all the way to La Guardia. Then a car and what a car it was too, a Dodge Charger and we certainly did charge up to Rhode Island arriving there around 12 at night what a long day and a red eye!

Rhode Island School of Art and Design is the arch type New England college traditional and self effacing with lots of very pretty students and conservative tutors.
What a venue, the theatre was state of the art and all brand new. I think it must have been the best on my tour. The audience however was a bit dry but livened up by the input of Linda Welters University of Rhode Island. Thanks Maria Tulukas for looking after us.

Kalona Quilt and Textile Museum

Next Stop was Kalona, in Iowa State. Would you believe there were lots ofAmish people living there? They were escaping east of the Mississippi, into a life with no electricity and certainly no hot water. We had arrived in Kalona and its village which is a number of houses brought in from all the outlying area put together by Marilyn Woodin and her band of intrepid supporters. Really Iowa is the home of the quilt, and what a wonderful range they were with prices up to $27000. Well reported in the local Press which says exactly what I’m all about and if it’s in the Kalona News you better believe it!!!

Indiana University

Heading off now to Indiana State University at Bloomington the home of the Dalai Lama’s brother, what a claim to fame! Plenty Hari Krishna types wandering about. A very beautiful place and looked wonderful in the spring. We stayed on campus and had a great talk at a large venue which was well attended and many thanks to Kathleen Rowold who looked after us well.

Chicago

Off to Chicago for a windy weekend, what a wonderful city all clean and nice but a bit chilly. We hoped to head on a 'gangster tour' found on the internet. So we drove to the depths of Cicero, to find an address which didn’t exist and knock on the door of a strange place to see our own gangsters, as Alba locked herself in the car, the ‘Gangsters’ were very nice but totally unhelpful and not nasty at all! Then off to find Al Capone, there were no signs as he wasn’t Chicago’s favourite son. However found it we did, after being given directions by a very pleasant old lady.

Then off to Gibsons, Chicago’s famous steak restaurant. I of course had burnt chops and Alba had the best steak she’d ever eaten.

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