Tuesday, 1 November 2016

A British girl abroad

I've been on an adventure!

An 'ausländische' abroad

I'm 51 but I have never travelled abroad alone........so this was quite an experience for me.....
I travelled to Frankfurt in Germany to visit my friend  Liz

I flew British airways from London City Airport
It's not an airport I've ever been to before so I wasn't sure what to expect.......I'm not well known for my sense of direction so my main concern was I wouldn't get to the airport on time, miss my plane and end up sitting on the runway sobbing!
 
I left my home early to try and avoid this.........taxi to the train station, then a long train trip using national rail and then changing to the docklands light railway ......which took me to the door of the airport.......woooohooo.......no chance of getting lost there.


 I had no luggage to go in the hold and had done the online check in previously so it was simple........just go to departures and wait........wait.....wait......for two hours.....clutching a coffee that cost £4.75. (not even great coffee)........ The airport is in central London and mainly used by business travellers so lots of men in suits with laptops.......not many women with cases stuffed with bag hard wear and Harris tweed.
 
I got stopped at security as the x-ray of my case looked very odd to them.....yes I had to open the case and have my smalls (or in reality rather large) pants taken out so they could see I was carrying d rings and swivel clips and not a bomb!
 
75 Mins later and I've landed at Frankfurt international airport.........after a little confusion Liz finds me.......I think I walked straight past her when I came through departure's but my panic was short lived........I finally met the enigmatic Mr M.........what a lovely gentleman...........gently spoken, intelligent and possibly the most tolerant man on the planet.......who else would allow a total stranger to visit and monopolise his wife for an entire 5 days......or maybe he enjoyed the break?
 
Half an hour driving (on the wrong side of the road) and we arrive at Chez Schaffner...........A home that totally suits Liz........full of beautiful handmade throws and quilts.....every room has a touch of the Moments magic in it.......even the bathrooms...lol

Coffee.....and Cake.............Liz's Father in Law lives very close by and bakes..........and oh my lord can he bake! he doesn't speak any English but I managed to thank him in German when he arrived with these beauties
 
 
Look great don't they......we had a sort of apple cake with what I would describe as a crumble top, a baked cheese cake and wonderful chocolate cake that I was told has red wine in it.........
after a tour of the house....including the sewing room I retired to bed.....exhausted.
Day two.........shop shop shopping.........after a breakfast on French toast we headed out to the first of three fabric shops Liz uses......
 


I don't think I need to say more....a sewers paradise........with faux leather, upholstery weight fabrics, cottons, voiles and everything in between.........some fabrics I had never seen or felt before......I touched and stroked everything.....rummaged in remnant baskets...........and generally fell in love with the whole place......I did buy, but I was also very aware that my case was small......so careful buying was a necessity!
 
Then to sewing..........I don't think I've ever seen anyone so organised in a sewing room......all the printed patterns are in folders and stored in folders with the designers name on them........fabrics are stored in boxes of design types or colour matches.......and there are some rolls of fabrics kept specifically for 'playing with ideas'...........I started with those......playing with ideas and trying out a machine that was totally new to me.........a Pffaf..........with modern gizmos..........it raises and lower the foot automatically, lowers the needle into the fabric without being asked too.......I can honestly say I never thought Id need such a system........but now I've tried it..........I think my next machine will have to have those facilities...... I made this little bag on the Pffaff.....
 
 
Once I had my head around the Pfaff Liz insisted I tried her beautiful Juki........this has yet another clever facility........an automatic thread cutter..............now I'm really envious..........I WANT this machine...........straight stitch only but she feels so solid and reliable...........as I'm sewing on her I am trying as hard as I can to message my husband through telepathy to let him know that smellies and slippers for Christmas just wont cut it this year......no pun intended! I also tried a Bernina......just so I can say I've tried....im a one trick pony with my love of vintage Elna's......
 
Day two............more shopping, more wonderful food......liz made American pancakes...........served with butter and syrup.........my waist band is elasticated and thank god it is.......... more sewing...........
 
 
A Charlies Aunt Saxted Satchel in velvet and faux leather.....then onto playing with ideas..........trying to draw or sew things that are in my head..........its funny how different people go about things in a different way.......but two creative brains working at full capacity can make a lot of mess.........and what started as a very very tidy sewing room is now starting to look a little less tidy.........I was doing my best to keep my mess contained.......Liz just throws things on the floor!
Out for dinner......schnitzel.......it doesn't get any more German than that..........followed by Slivovitz.....LOVELY!

Day three......more creating and sewing, some design ideas being tossed about....some preparation for bags to be sewn at home as I don't think I can get much more in my case.....lots of laughing.....and more wonderful food........Weisswurst.....a white sausage that's was served with Pretzels.......not the crisp type snacks we get in the UK , but big bread pretzels with salt on the top, accompanied by an amazing mustard chutney.....totally my favourite thing I think I ate!

Mr M also cooked for us.....a wonderful rich Goulash stew which was served with a sort of potato dumpling and red cabbage sauerkraut.......not only does he actively encourage Liz to sew, he cooks too, the perfect man in my opinion.

Sadly all too soon its time to fly home, my case is filled to capacity.....to the point of bursting the zipper. I got stopped at security again at the airport but managed to cram everything back in again....just!

flight, train and taxi and I arrived home just before midnight to be greeted by my very excited dog.....everyone else was a sleep....

Thank you so much for welcoming me into your home and your sewing room Liz........and for your endless hospitality........this 'ausl√§ndische'  will be back!