Well, we did it! We survived Ann Arbor, the “bucket list” show and it was good. I see why some artists have chosen not to do the show any more because it was very hard. The days were Wednesday through Friday, 10-9 and Saturday, 10-6. That’s a LONG time to sit in a tent. Don’t get me wrong, I was very fortunate to get into this show and the quality of the art was very impressive. Sales were good but one had the feeling of a slow show because of the long hours and lags between sales. Also, four days of incessant, “My mother was a quilter, my aunt was a quilter, my sister is a quilter, but she sure does nothing like this!” gets old. I put on my “Wow, that’s so amazing” face and try to be interested. Then after they leave I hear the exact phrase again from Rod with the exact voice inflections, sending me into helpless giggles and eye rolls.
We had to set up in the rain on Tuesday but then Wednesday and Thursday were both beautiful days with low temps. The show organizers treated us to a wonderful breakfast on Thursday where they announced the awards and someone came by the tents every afternoon with ice water. I was lucky to have my own personal little tree directly behind my tent to provide shade in the afternoon. The town was a tent city with four other shows going on at the same time. Parking was a challenge so we were glad we had signed up for a week long parking pass at a local garage with in/out privileges.
Overall, it was a a good show and I’d do it again. After doing shows which aren’t balanced or shows which gouge the artists with incredibly high booth fees it’s nice to be a part of another show which is fairly priced and maintains a high standards.
We stayed with my brother, Phil, who lived 1/2 hour away. His daughter, Hannah, was waiting for us when we arrived and greeted us with a hand made card. She also eagerly showed us her pictures from horseback riding camp. We got to eat at some local restaurants with amazing food from Vietnam, Iraq and India, yum!
Now we are in Iowa visiting relatives. My parents both grew up here before becoming missionaries to China and Japan. Iowa was the land of milk and honey when we were growing up. We’d arrive here on furlough and would be welcomed with open arms and kisses from Aunts and Uncles who would shower us with attention, food and fun. Now the older generation have all passed and we come to visit cousins. Rod has cousins here, as well, and here you see him shucking corn with his cousins Steve and Phil Gingerich.
We all look and feel older but it’s fun to get together to tell stories from the past and get to know a new generation of children. This area is beautiful with its rolling hills and tall rows of corn.
It’s nice to relax a bit and enjoy a slower pace. Life is good.