Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Retreat on the Lake

Our art quilt group has just finished a two day 'retreat' in Racine WI, on Lake Michigan. This is the sunrise on Tuesday morning. It is way too cold there to go down to the water, and I am a wimp when it comes to being cold.
I could tell you all the stuff that went on, but really, you don't care, I know.

I will tell you the one important thing. I laughed and laughed and laughed some more. I rarely get to laugh that long and hard and it really changes you. It melts barriers, it relieves tension, it restores your good health in ways that are hard to describe. I feel rejuvenated, despite a viscious hangover. O yes there was a lot of wine...and knitting and singing and quilts and all my girlfriends, and some new ones too. Those who couldn't make it really missed a great time.

Because our group was celebrating our tenth anniversary, PAQA brought over Japanese quilt artist Keiko Goke, and her interpreter and our good friend Mariko Akizuki. Laura Wasilowski arranged everything surrounding their visit, including an exhibit of Keiko's work at the
Chicago show, the retreat, the Keiko and Friends Exhibit and three different workshops for Keiko to teach.

Laura is Superwoman. Without reservations.

I was supposed to help and of course I did nothing. Things changed, schedules and rides and everything all worked out anyway and the only thing I actually did as requested was to provide a short but amusing slide presentation of our two teaching trips to Japan.
This was where the laughing came in.

Laura and Melody as geishas in training.

Kyoto, Japan March 2001

2001 2005
Part of the laughter was the surprise at seeing what a fat girl I was then, compared to the new
Mrs. Mel. My girlfriend Tommy Fitzsimmons delicately called me a cow, a sobriquet that Laura and Frieda are now using with relish. Would you like fries with that?


  1. Hi Melody,

    Wow, thanks for posting a 'before' photo. I've read your posts about diet and body image before. Now I get it.... and I should have got it before since I have been through the same thing. It's wonderful to know that I don't have to spend the rest of my existance feeling crap and unhealthy. :-)))

  2. There was definitely a skinny Melody in there wanting to come out! Maybe I should try that no will power diet, but I think that is a lie! I have decided that I will not diet again. I will eat healthy, enjoy an occasional treat, and drink wine in moderation, get the recommended dose of daily exercise and my weight be damned.

  3. Miss, love the pic of you and Laura. Could this be a part time job? And as usual, you look fabu, dahling in your thinness....and way younger. On another note I have gained three pounds since February...not enough rowing...bleech.

  4. I was actually thin in 2001 and am fat now, but I'm working on it :) Thanks for the inspiration.

    It's official, you are living my fantasy life. This sounds like a wonderful retreat.

    I looked at the link to Artfabrik and I was blown away by the great work posted there. It made me sorry I missed the show...Jen

  5. I was wondering where you were! (I was suffering Melody withdrawal when I checked your blog while you were gone!) Glad you had fun...sounds like a great time. You make a lovely Geisha!

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