Sunday, March 18, 2012

Birmingham, here I come...

It’s been nine years since my first and so far last visit to Birmingham – in March, as participant in a European exchange program for university lecturers. By then I had of course heard about the Festival of Quilts, but it was absolutely impossible to combine the two occasions. While I was there, my husband fell seriously ill and I had to return home earlier than planned, so I did not even get to see much besides the university campus. Since then I have been thinking that I want to go and visit the festival at some point.
Some of my quilts have already been there. Two years ago I participated in the competition and had two quilts in the shows. Last year, SAQA’s „Beyond Comfort“ opened in Birmingham, which includes two of my quilts. So I finally decided this would be the year when I would go there myself.
Since November I had been checking the homepage regularly, and was pleased to receive a mail pre-announcing early booking for the festival for members of QGBI “and associated European guilds” – that’s me! After all, I am a member of the German Patchwork Guild, that should qualify. So I downloaded the program, picked out a few classes I would like to participate in, and waited almost patiently for March 1st.
I assumed I might not get into all the classes, but I was lucky. Because I opted to call them and not attempt any online registration processes, it all went smoothly. I managed to reach somebody on my first try, talked to a very nice person on the other end of the line, gave her all the class numbers I had picked out, and she would let me know within two days in case they were not available any longer.
But I received all my tickets a week later. Meanwhile I have even corrected the wrong number of membership I had given them when I quoted my number by heart – no problem, it does not affect my registration.
Everything else I left to our fabulous travel agent, a former school friend of my husband. she is also called Uta, which always makes for nice openings of telephone conversations – “Hi Uta, this is Uta...” She, of course, got me a better deal for a flight than I would have managed to get if I had fidgeted with booking over the internet, and she also managed to get me a better hotel rate than the one I would have got if I had registered as a visitor of the Festival of Quilts.
So I’ll be going to be present at the Festival for the first time in August this year – my plane tickets arrived on Thursday, and I am excited!


  1. Look forward to seeing you there! I've been going ever since it started, even going there straight from my honeymoon!!

  2. Well, a honeymoon has to be over at some point, and that's when the other important things in life kick in. I can very well empathize with you in that aspect. Let's arrange a meeting in B'ham!