I'm excited, Houston here I come! Even after all these years of attending I never lose the thrill of entering the show on preview night! I'm wondering how many quilts they will have on display to marvel over and how many vendors they will have this year to tempt me or fill me with ideas. I am thankful that I live close enough that I can go every year and that I'm able to get off from work, too.
Today I was mentally going over my plans and found myself debating about what to do for my evening meal on Thursday. I normally stay downtown and have found that trying to eat somewhere can be tricky without a reservation. This year I'm back in the 'burbs so I have more options. But I'm seriously thinking about seeing if I can get into the Festival's Thursday night event, the Quiltapalooza. I've never been before and it sounds like fun, especially since it is Halloween night and they are encouraging costumes and are having activities around the Halloween theme. The bad part is that they offer a box meal, but the good news is they have a cash bar and music. Plus they are offering some nice door prizes supplied by the Festival's sponsor companies.
I had the amazing thought that if I do go I won't know a single person there, probably. But I will be instant friends with everyone, too. I don't know what it is about quilters, but there is something that just makes us instant friends. It is always fun to walk into the large food court at the Festival, find a vacant seat, ask politely if I may join the table, sit down and immediately be in the conversation. Nine times out of ten this happens. Where are you from? Is this your first time here? What classes are you taking? Where did you find that fabric you're passing around? Where did you get that barbecue, that looks good? These are the opening questions. When you leave you wish everyone well and that you enjoyed the time together, then you get back to business.
This also happened on both of the quilt trips I've taken. Fifty strangers on meeting night are all good friends by noon the next day. A few meals and some time on the motor coach and you are well acquainted. Same thing with classes. There is just a warm spirit between us.
I suspect that it is because in most cases your enjoyment for working with needle and thread was passed to you by your mother and grandmother. They had been taught by a previous generation and were passing on the craft. Maybe that is what draws us together, that tie with the past and knowing that generations of women (and men!) have made the same patterns using cotton fabrics and batting. I'm not sure what it is that draws us together, really. It is more than just a common love of a craft; it is a deeper commonality into our spirits.