Monday, 26 September 2011

Exploring Des Moines

After I battled my way through half of a giant waffle that I made myself at the hotel breakfast buffet, Norma collected me and we went off exploring again. I was beginning to get my bearings and recognise landmarks. We wandered around the Botanic Gardens where inventive gardeners had painted quilt blocks to hang amongst the foliage in honour of the forthcoming quilt show. Our next stop was a Target superstore so that I could buy some fairy lights for the inside of the Quilted Yurt. We found these in the impressive Christmas/Halloween department. My next assignment was to find a pair of Converse shoes for Freya and the reward for completing that mission was coffee and a muffin in Barnes & Noble. If I was a homeless intellectual I think I would try to live in there. I rashly purchased some attachments for my Kitchenaid mixer because they were on special offer but they are quite heavy – however, I brought some longarm machine parts into the USA so it should be a straight swap of weight in my luggage.

We visited the Historical Building in downtown Des Moines which was a terrific free museum that contained a variety of fascinating artefacts from Iowa and neighbouring Native American People. There was hardly anyone else there so we could browse and read the labels at our leisure. Our next stop was to the sculpture park where there is a significant collection of modernist works, some impressive and some just weird. We drove past the Governor's Mansion and some other lovely old houses off Grand Avenue. It has been a privilege to be shown around by a Des Moines local. Norma even took me past the Iowa State Fairground because one of the buildings has been decorated with a frieze of ceramic quilt blocks. We drove around the beautiful man-made lake and she answered all of my questions tirelessly. She had brought with her the brand new copy of "American Quilter" magazine in which there was a good article about the Wisconsin Fiber Arts Museum – I was thrilled that the Yurt and I were mentioned! I returned to the hotel, planning on working on the Yurt Book draft but I ended up reading a novel accompanied by a refreshing G&T. I will definitely deal with the draft before I start reading anything new...

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for taking us along on your journey, it's fun to be there!

    Best Wishes
    Kay in Scotland