28 April 2008

The USA tour continues...
I am home and will be posting about parts of my artful tour of America.

Fast Forward -

4:am Get up and say a sad good bye to Michael and Missoula. (More on that another post)

5:am Get to the airport and pray they will allow me to take The 12 Tribes book on board with me – there was no way I was letting that book out of my sight. Have Michael at-the-ready with a spare bag just in case they don't allow it on the plane.

Sigh of relief - all ok to fly - but had to listen to the security man tell me his adventures in Australia whilst he was stationed there during Vietnam war. Missoula airport is rather small- dont think many Aussies venture there!!!

7:am Fly to Denver

8.30am Arrive Denver.

Rush to gate 23 – no flight leaving here for Philli.

Rush to Departures Board – change of gate.

Go to gate 34 – phew, flight leaving on time. hope my bags make it.

Announcement – flight delayed.

2nd announcement – mechanical trouble.

3rd announcement - Change to gate 31.

4th annoucement – Go eat lunch – not sure if you will get to Philli today.


5th announcement – Trying to get another plane but there’s been an earthquake in Chicago – no United flights leaving from there.

Change gate to 28.

Curse some more.

Feet are sore – running from gate to gate – shlepping the very heavy 12 Tribes!!!

6th announcement – go have some coffee – relax – and move to gate 36. Wait for plane to arrive, we hope.

Watch a car chase in L.A. on CNN while bored out of my brain.

WARNING: - Do not sit or stand next to a man with grey hair, about 6ft 4’ wearing a yellow shirt and grey pants...

If you do wear a gas mask – for he will pass wind every time he gets close!!!

1.30pm Take off shoes

WARNING: - despite my no feet photo's policy on this blog there are a couple I must share here... sorry.

1.33pm stare out the window looking for the said plane to come in.

1.34pm ALERT – man with yellow shirt approaching,

Take cover!

Pull out perfume

– ooops – not allowed liquids - $%^#$@$(!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Curse terrorists.

Pull shirt over nose and breathe deeply and thank heaven you had a nice long shower in the morning and enough perfume to inhale!

1:40pm Ring Michael and Karen, give her the update.

1.45pm Curse at the 6 hours you could not go junking in Philli.

1.50pm look at the gate, yet again, sigh.

1:51pm Yaah, the plane the plane!!!

2.00pm Board the plane – look ahead to make sure man with yellow shirt is not sitting next to you.

Panic! As you approach seat 9C – can’t see the rows properly but he is there – almost.
Phew he’s in row 8 – but the down draught – Oh My G-d!

Look at row 9.
Panic again.
Realise there is a man sitting in the middle seat.
He is so large that there is no room for me to sit down.

And I mean no room.

There was no room for even one of my legs and I have skinny legs.

Go down about 6 rows-place "The 12 Tribes" in one of the only overhead compartments available.

Then try and walk to the front whilst everyone is cursing me for going the wrong way.

Speak to flight attendant and almost burst into tears over the embarassment I felt.

Flight attendant tells me to go back to gate – I said over my dead body – I am only leaving this plane if you come with me as I had just left "The 12 Tribes" in the overhead.

She comes with me and then aborts the mission.

Another attendant comes running up – hysterical about the man and explains that he should have bought 2 seats. I was actually mortified for him.

They find me another seat.

Arrive Philli and find Leslie (great photographer - who I had only met through my blog) waiting for me... How nice is that!

Off to Karen’s to meet up with my former Italian workshop mates – all staying together at the Cole residence for a few days of shopping, laughing, reminiscing and eating.

Leslie tells me that Michelle Ward , artist extraordinaire, an artist I so admire had just left a comment on my blog that she lives nearby and that J. R. lives in Philli.

Thinking thinking thinking
- JR, JR, JR?????????

Nooooooooo not JR Ewing!


No way!!!

Ask Karen,


tell Karen,


Beg Karen

How to get in touch via phone to get Michelle's (blog mate) phone number.

Karen rings her blog mate, Susannah.

No time for emailing!

10am next morning: Ring Michelle

Put Karen on the phone to organise... whilst I am froliking on her balcony - doing some insane happy dance that I will maybe meet them.

Michelle rings back - the date is set - the next day we are to meet up with some fellow bloggers at Judi's place.

For those who don't know me well - I am a huge fan of Judi's artwork. A fellow sepiaholic!
Sorry Ro! LOL.

Judi is sooooooooo talented and whenever I see her splendid artwork appear in Lynne Perella's books I pour over them for ages.

She is an artist I truly admire and Michelle had read that in a post from Seth's blog - another blogger mate (who I almost got to meet in New York - next trip - for sure!)

10am: take photo with the most amazing friends a girl could have found.

Stop on the way at Home Depot running up and down the aisles looking for Copper flashing - nope not there.

Stop again at Loewes- running up and down the aisles for copper flashing - success.

Arrive at Judi's door.
Karen droves up and tells us that she has been to the house before.
A twilight zone moment, she thought perhaps or
was it my Kismet experiences in life rubbing off one her - she remarked???

Just about the first thing I see in my excitement was this...

Thinking maybe we had arrived at The Campbells Home I looked up and there was Michelle.

And then I met Judi... the ever so gracious and humble Judi.

So 3 cheers to Michelle for organising what became the most wonderful day and the highlight day of my trip.

What more could a girl ask for but to be one amongst so many talented artists who came together via blogs.

We had an awesome lunch, met Judi's lovely husband in their delightful home.

I was so overwhelmed at the hospitality.

The hours we spent together were so memorable but I cannot do it justice here. You just had to be there.

Wandering around Judi's place whilst she showed us her art and magnificent collection of Antique books - I just could not wipe the smile off my face. Michelle was so bubbly and a gracious host to us all too.

I showed everyone present my 12 Tribes book,

feeling extremely humbled to present it after perusing some of the artwork by Judi, Lynne Perella, Michelle to name but a few.

(Note the hand positioning Michelle!)

Then we were honoured to be taken through Bee Shay's magnificent artwork. Wow and I was just at Artfest with Bee but did not get the chance to meet her - I felt very lucky for this day.

So lucky - I recieved a gorgeous gift from Michelle - inside the hand painted paper was a hand painted box - filled with, yes you guessed it...

4 leaf clovers - lucky indeed!

Ahhh yes, here it is right next to the now famous letter of that day...


Yes the letter F

" F "

As only Michelle could say it...

on No wait here she goes again...

" F "

FFFFFaar out!

Yes that was it.

Or was it "fantastic".
Yes it was fabulous, a fabulous day had by all.

Then it was off for a quick tour of Philli and on to Frida exhbit.
But thats another story for another day....


Sue said...

WOW, that's all I can say!

Sam Marshall said...

Yep, I agree, WOW! What an experience.

michelle ward said...

Girl, I am howling!!! You have me doubled over with your story telling from the airport guy to the JR thing. You are killing me! Finally a photo of the shoes *grin*. You totally captured the serendipitous spirit of the day - and crazy fun way we were able to connect thanks to Leslie (didn't know it was she who read the comment) and thanks to Karen and Susanna for the phone hook-up, and of course thanks to Judi who let us all crash her pad. You are misleading your readers that I might have f-bombed a few times *wink*. Great post - great re-cap - great time! It was a *lucky* day. xo

michelle ward said...

p.s. i forgot to mention what a privilege it was to see your 12 Tribes book, and to get your very personal narrative about it....and love the *rocks hands* pose :)

Carmen said...

Oh my gosh! What an amazing stop on your journey!!! I love the story too, the gaseous guy and the issue on the plane, oh my!

What an experience though, I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall, just taking it all in!

Have a great week!



Jen said...

Holy lord liftin' you know how to pack in a "day" girlfriend! I've been trying to email ya but they keep returning. :(

Karen Cole said...

Yes, you are correct, it is a great and funny story that only YOU could tell. You got me to actually READ the entire thing!!!!! ....and the sepia photos (sorry again Ro) work so well. My double chin and wrinkles only show just a little bit.

You were a pleasure to have and show around. My only request for your next visit would be for you to SLEEP. Girl, people are not supposed to function as well as you on such little sleep. TAKE A NAP!!!

Steph said...

Wowww your journey to Philli is real epic story ! I enjoyed your post ! Thanks for sharing!

Ro Bruhn said...

Wow Judy, I'm so glad we don't have those sort of airport happenings, although I did sit behind your grey haired guy on a flight to England once. How exciting to see Judi's work, even though it was in sepia. Can't wait to hear the rest of your tales, riveting stuff. Waiting for the SLK experience.

Jen Crossley said...

WOW Im tired just listening to all that happened.Cant wait to catch up
And Im with Ro SLK, SLK

shelley in big sky said...

what an adventure...much fun had by all! can't wait to hear more, you definitly made me LOL. next time in MT do give me a ring. play well...shelley

Cindy Dean said...

I am laughing so hard about your airport story! It reminded my of my airport adventures in Turkey a couple of summers ago. It sounds like you had a wonderful time after that though. My sister lives in Philly and I will be going there in May. Glad to see you are safe and sound!

Leslie said...

Wonderful post Judy. I loved reading the story and I'd heard it already!

Your 12 Tribes book is so fabulous! Thanks for the showing and the explanation. Really fascinating! I assume made it home safely with you and you didn't have to fly home with the man in the yellow shirt!

I LOVED meeting you, and I can't wait until our paths cross again!

susanna said...

Your trip to Philly was quite the adventure! I'm so glad that you had a terrific time on your trip. Karen really is the hostess with the mostest, isn't she? And Michelle and Judi were wonderful for hosting the last minute bloggergal get-together. I can't tell you how inspiring it was to see all the artwork and to hear others talk of their own creative process. Your Twelve Tribes book is incredible. It really, truly is. I was blown away but all the research and thought you put into each page. Wow!

Glad to hear that you returned home safe and sound. I hope you continue to float on all the art-talk and inspiration found in America. :)

gina armfield said...

Well that grueling trip was worth all the frustration, footaches and smells ;) as your wonderful gathering of some of my most favorite artist appears to be a golden memory - you are a lucky gal - good things come to those who wait or uh endure.

Jo Wholohan said...

Very funny Judy, travelling can be an experience sometimes :))

Wow what an amazing journey!!!!

Judy Wise said...

(laughing madly) - you poor thing (ha ha ha the man with the yellow shirt) and then you lucky girl (all the wonderful artists and bloggers). You've had a gorgeous adventure and you sure know how to tell a great story. Thank you for 20 minutes of out loud laughter. xo

Julie H said...

Soooo good to have you back, and posting Judy, how I love the details you share. How hilarious about the 'yellow shirt' man, what wonderful socialising, bah humbug to the airports. OK I am rambling...what a wonderful time.

Jacky said...

Oh Judy, How wonderful Judi Reich and Michelle Ward, what more could a girl ask for. I love Judi's art, along with Nina's, think its the vintage thing. What lovely memories you are making.

Queen Of Toys said...


I could just vision you running from gate to gate and finding no plane then having to sit next to the fat man and putting up with the man in the yellow top farting all the time. I was totally enthralled and crippled with laughter. Did you know you are not allowed to carry perfume onto the plane? I don’t care I had the best laugh I have had in ages. Keep the stories coming you are good at it. Glad you got to meet up with some wonderful people. Oh and the 'F' word and pictures great stuff, you can see it just……. about coming out. The ‘F’ that is.

Janine said...

What a wonderful event Michelle was able to organise for you all! As for the guy in the yellow shirt - have had that awful experience too! Look forward to reading more of your adventures. Janine xo

Karen Owen said...

What an entertaining and amusing story! Although I'm sure it didn't feel amusing as you ran from gate to gate. Been there, done that. I'm so glad you are home safe and sound and looking forward to more adventures and more ART!


Lynn said...

How fun to read your adventures, the airport scene was hysterical...sorry it was boring at times for you...but the telling of it was great!
I got a kick out of listening to your joy at being with the other artists, all those wonderfully talented women in one room. Wow.
You sounded like a little kid in a candy store! I love how human you are,how real and down to earth.

Glad the 12 Tribes got to be seen by people who could appreciate it.
Lucky them!

michel said...

Thanks for the great story and wonderful pictures! I was so excited to see the picture of the Lauren bottle as I thought I was the only one who wore the "original" namesake fragrance. Yeah!

Lisa Hoffman said...

I feel like I've just been 'round the World with you.
I love the way that you've "re-played" your day here, complete with pictures.

Nothing like broadening the Circle. Call the next time that you're in Denver, stuck or otherwise!

Warmest Regards,
Lisa Hoffman

Susan Tuttle said...

Hi Judy!
I am so enjoying hearing about your trip! I just saw a photo of you over on Karen's blog. You mentioned she lives near Michelle. The funny thing is, I grew up in NJ very close to where you were visiting and went to Rutgers - Mason Gross School of the Arts, which is right there. I used to take the train into NYC all the time.

Thanks for the kind blog comment the other week. I did try to email you, but it got returned to sender a couple of times.

I can't wait to hear more about your trip!


Loudlife said...

What an adventure! Wow is right!
(misadventure might be more accurate at the airport)

I have to tell you I'm star-struck just reading about your fab day of bonding with the chicas! You are so clearly delighted to be with them in all the pictures, it's wonderful. But hey, you - you're a superstar, too. Don't forget that! (That might even get you some clout with the airline next time.........oh! I'm cracking myself up here! Like anything can make a difference in the U.S. airport situation...)

Glad to have you back in blogland, can't wait to read about more of your adventures.


Sue McGettigan said...

Ah, the travails of travel - delays are so sucky, and fellow travelers can be the most fabulous or the bane of your journey, but how worth it when you ended up having such a wonderful day at the end of it all!!! Lucky duck :) Next time come through LA to hang out here:) Welcome home.

Jamie said...

Once again, you made me laugh. Some say it's all about balance but I say you have to outweigh the bad with the good. Sounds like your travel torture was worth it in the end. :-)

Kathryn and Joy said...

Wonderful to hear your funny recap of a tiresome day. But I'm glad you made it and we were able to spend some great time together.
I was awed by the 12 Tibes and your explanation. It was a terrific time spent with super people. Lucky us!!
xo Joy

thealteredpage said...

What an adventure...and what a inspiring and hilarious story you shared. So sorry I missed you. Definitely next time!

Ruth Rae said...

yes even I read this post! LOL oh my the airport seen! only you my dear! only you! and I am so with Karen on how your just keep on going and by the time you were with her you were on your last leg but its sounds as if you found a way to pack in so many more amazing fun!!! I do so wish that I was able to see 12 tribes! I am glad your home safe I know that kids are happy to have you back! oh and one more thing I am so drolling over Bali!!!

Jo Capper-Sandon said...


ohhh myyyyyyyyy goodness.... what an unforgettable experience for you.

FFFFFFFabulous post!!

Kristen Robinson said...

Darling friend you had a wonderful time and I am so very happy you had on all the experiences and time with friends that you did. So happy you met Michelle she is a true treasure never ceases to make me smile. Miss you so much.