Hello everyone! You see it: I’m back from wonderful four-textile-days.
Magic moments of wonder,
amazing moments discovering little treasures,
surprising moments when I saw ugly quilts (like last year …), made wonderful contacts,
met very nice people (of course!),
had very interesting lectures and a good little workshop.
I bought also too much stuff, but, yes, that temptation is so strong … and the £ versus € is interesting.
So I spoiled myself a little.
In the next days, I’ll tell you about my vision of the Festival of Quilts.
Thus there will be (exceptionally) no preview as usual on Mondays for my book – I’m going to skip one week.
Let’s start with the Start!
I thought that those airplanes didn’t fly anymore, that they were old and ‘antique’ …
eeeuuuuhhh … NO!
They still go in the air! A plane driven with such big propellers …
To start we (Liliane and I) were sitting in the last row of the tail:
that’s a place a little more “agitating” your bips than when you’re seating in the nose of the plane, especially when the pilot is rather a "sportive driver".
But it took only an hour, and we were glad to walk through the galleries of the NEC in direction of the hall where the Festival took place.
The suitcase on wheels is really a good invention, even if at departure the weight is only 8 kilos, wheels are good!
And you never guess how we came back … yes in the same propeller-plane!!
With a lot of more weight (17,5 kilo for my suitcase and more for certain others…).
This time with a better pilot … calm and smoothly,
but … now we had a seat just near the propellers … a “little” more noisy though!
But again, as you can read, safely landed and,
with my suitcase, open at home yesterday evening,
I’ve been enjoying the look at my purchases.
Now I just have to download the hundreds of pic’s I took
Besides this ‘airplane-report’ ??? oh, you know me … I have always something interesting happening …
I think this year it’s the last time we went to Express Holiday Inn nearby the NEC in Birmingham.
After five years of happiness over there, we had this year some moments of ‘just bad luck’.
There is no restaurant-service for the evening in the hotel (only breakfast) but a Pub is just nearby where we got used to go for supper. Even with a silly system with numbered spoons to put on the table an ordering at the bar to get your food, it was rather good: a nice atmosphere, good food, a wide choice … all the ingredients to spend a nice evening as closure of a good day.
First evening now, on Thursday, we had the happy surprise that ordering was taken at the table! Wow! They finally understood that that’s the way to work in a restaurant! (Later I learned that the ‘spoons’ were still used in the right side of the pub…).
So we had a good tasteful meal. Look at my dessert (profiteroles) and Liliane’s (crumble) on a big big plate.
Next day (friday) we went back: oooohhhh !!!! you had to make a reservation!
Why didn’t they tell us day before????
So no reservation = no food.
And for next day (saturday) ? I asked.
well, You have to come back tomorrow to see if there’s a table left, did they say.
And can we take a reservation now for the next day? No.
Maybe if you come soon enough … and – question - that is? – answer - Soon enough, and then maybe you’ll have food….
They still are not very commercial-minded in that pub, if you ask me. In Belgium that would never happen (this is a little chauvinistic thought)
But … nevertheless: we saw that in the hotel they had (new since this year) a meal-service from 6 till 10 pm. So we go back and sit down and order.
The choice is rather limited: chicken wings as appetizer, three kinds of pizza’s and a burger with fries. That’s it.
Okay, for once, we’ll do with this. Sitting with about twelve persons in the resto, a few guys sitting nearby, some quilters, all waiting for their meal, we join them. And we wait, and wait, and wait.
The guys look not really satisfied; they are waiting since an hour!
The responsible of the hotel explains that they are overwhelmed in the kitchen and very busy (??? we are not that crowded thought we…).
But then, the waiter arrives with one plate in his two hands with a burger and fries for one of them. And after a couple of minutes he brings the second one for the other guys and so on, and when the last one gets his burger, the first one has finished … and after some minutes more they receive some more fries – ordered a while before.
Meanwhile some other tables of quilters get their food too, and we? We are still waiting.
Getting nervous and very hungry, Liliane and Chris go to the vending machine to buy two little packages of chips …
After an hour waiting the responsible explains to us that the machine of ordering broke down and thus our order never arrived at the kitchen (some ten meters are separating the bar where orders are placed and the kitchen…must be very long for the staff...).
Finally after one hour and twenty minutes, I got my burger (as hard as leather) and fries (black and dry - hey, I’m from the country of tasty fries!!!).
With a little part of the pizza of Liliane and a little wing from Chris (chicken from her plate of course, not from her body!) and the salted chips, my stomach has calmed down and we decide wisely not to repeat this adventure…
So on Saturday evening, we bought a sandwich in the NEC before leaving the exhibition area, and eaten it in the restaurant-room of our hotel and saw then, that indeed, they had a problem with the ordering system, because now the few (very few) people attempting the supper-adventure-in-the-hotel are served within ten minutes with their burger or pizza.
But as we really didn’t want to eat another pizza or burger on saturday, at noon we took a pasta dish in the NEC, and in the evening we had our tasty sandwich. Afterwards, we sew, crochet, and talked together till night, and that was a nice closure of our Holiday-Inn-staying.
Got to say that breakfast was not that good as before (no tasty bread, no cheese or ham anymore– but new on the buffet were the white beans and sausages)
It was nice with meals in the pub nearby in the past, but if they don’t take anybody anymore, and limit to one service an evening-shift ….
So we’ll see next year, where we will lay down our tired little feet to sleep.
And now I’ll prepare my pic’s for tomorrow and read the blogs I follow!
Have a nice Monday afternoon and evening.