Friday, November 19, 2021

Quilting Madness

I had no idea my wife was into quilts but I supposed after 28 years of marriage the fact I know her favorite color might be enough to get by. Not at all.

I had figured a plan to get to Tennessee and our next moochdock by taking backroads so when, after the second walk of the morning I proceeded to suggest same to the formerly bundled up sleeper she demurred. 

Yes I was irritated for a second as I am tired of freeways but instead she agreed to the backroads part of the plan but wanted to go to Paducah. Which is half way to the suburb of Nashville whence we were bound. Hmm. I sent Gary a text.

Come Thursday come Friday no problem he replied generously so we planned an afternoon stop at the national Quilt Museum in Paducah and a sleepover in the Tennessee welcome center on I-24 where I am writing these words. 

The day was sunny and bright after the overcast thundery evening on our arrival just east of east St Louis. We set off near noon from the rest area and hit the backroads, zigging and zagging cross southern Illinois, said to be home to the country's output of horseradish. Both of us like horseradish but neither of us knows what it looks like in its natural state so perhaps we passed some loo and perhaps not.

Eventually after crossing farmland for a couple of hours we arrived at the Ohio but our way was barred on Illinois Highway 100 by a bridge with a clearance of just 9 feet and six inches which is about exactly how tall our van is at the very back where the WeBoost cell antenna is located. There was no chance we would get on the bridge with a steady flow of traffic and risk either breaking our antenna or backing traffic up for miles. We turned and went back to the Interstate and crossed the river in proper style on a modern bridge.

The quilt museum is as you see it, created by an avid quilter called Meredith Schroeder who lived in Paducah. I know nothing of quilting but I'll tell you this: I had no idea the medium was so versatile and intricate as we saw displayed. 

Quilters have traveled all over the place even Antarctica and created gorgeous pieces of art from the things they saw. We saw icebergs and redwoods, traditional quilt designs (traditional to my eye) and a running series  in a special display by woman called Valerie C White a former teacher who created a series called Roots and Refuge. If you loom back over some of the quilts you'll see pieces showing scenes above ground and below and she has connected the idea of roots to a visual depiction.

I leave these images for you to look at as I feel anything I say would sound idiotic in the face of my lack of knowledge.

Small quilts:

Tiny quilts!

The redwoods, a particular favorite of mine as I am familiar with the woods.

After an hour or so Rusty got his release and we bounded across the lawn in front of the museum and into downtown Paducah, a city familiar to neither of us.

A Lewis and Clark depiction:

Paducah is lovely and I recommend a visit. We will definitely return after Covid to check out the delightful bars and restaurants which looked so inviting as the sun started to set.

The full moon was rising over the Ohio and we walked out to the levee.

Paducah it turns out was a major river port servicing all the traffic that trundled up and down the Ohio . General Grant secured Paducah for the Union in 1861 as it was so tactically important for the Civil War.

After we walked back to Gannet 2 we drove down to the water's edge for a couple of pictures. 

Rusty kept watch from his place on the floor up front. The bouncy roads of Illinois and Kentucky kept him low in the van ignoring his bed on our bed and preferring not to sit in the passenger seat when Layne was in the back. He had a long day, a full dinner and was in a coma by the time we turned the laptop on to stream a movie.

Sunset over the levee. 

Next: Tennessee.