Arrival at Dulles International Airport, Virginia

Virginia Reel

Having already spent a week on my own in the US before the start of the planned trip, I was very happy to welcome Carola and the rest of the group on 23 October 2010 at Dulles International Airport. While I love travelling on my own, quilting experiences are best shared with other quilters to achieve the full impact. ;-)

Luckily, everybody got through immigration and customs without any difficulties. The pre-registration through ESTA really seems to have improved the process for everybody travelling on the VISA waiver programme. After a lot of hugging and greeting activities, we went in search of our bus and driver. Paul was waiting outside the airport building with a vehicle especially suited to our needs because of its - yippee! – HUGE storage capacity.

We used the short trip to our first hotel in Leesburg, Virginia, to talk about the most important rule for the trip. Participants of the 2008 trip to the major Amish settlements sniggered a little when I started my usual spiel about “sing and dance”: more than five minutes late, sing; more than ten minutes late, sing and dance; more than fifteen minutes late, cry, because you’ve been left behind!

The group had the opportunity to practice punctuality right away when we stopped for groceries at a near-by supermarket... Luckily, nobody had to be plucked by force from the magazine rack that contained several interesting quilting magazines. Everybody was back in the bus by the appointed time, and we arrived at the hotel probably just before the first snoring sounds would have been heard in the bus. Despite it being about 4 am Central European Time, a small party still had enough energy left to walk to a nearby Vietnamese restaurant, serving excellent food and – surprisingly – Austrian wine.

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