I had the opportunity for a spur of the moment road trip. I had to take my Mom down to southern Illinois to meet up with a friend. I decided to go a little further south and re-visit one of my favorite museums. The National Quilt Museum. This museum I would qualify in one sentence: ” A Feast For The Eyes ” You do not in any way need to be a quilter, or even interested in quilting to love this museum. The quilts on exhibit here come from are genres in quilting and can be categorized as works of art. They are like exquisite paintings in fabric. The quilt museum displays men and women quilters both as well as quilters from other countries. The building itself is delightful and if you are interested in quilting you can sign up for one of their many workshops with master quilters to guide you.
The Quilters Museum is not all there is to see in Paducah. There is a beautiful historic district with many interesting eateries and antique shops.
And if there is one thing the city of Paducah knows how to do well it would be the creation of the most astounding and decorated floodwall. The city of Paducah sits on the banks of the Ohio river, one of the nation’s main water ways. The Ohio river along with rivers like the great Mississippi and the Missouri were the roads for westward travelers in a time when there were no roads. Like most river towns Paducah lives with the threat of the river overflowing and flooding the historic downtown. In response to this on-going threat the city has built a floodwall and this floodwall they have decorated with beautiful mural depicting scenes of national interest, technological advancements, scenes of life in a river town and local monuments. The effect is both astounding and charming all at the same time. The floodwall is visible both from the National Quilt Museum and from the Historic Downtown.
After 25 years of living an exciting and wonderful life overseas, I have come back to my home town, to the place that created the foundation of me. It has often been said that you can never go home. I suppose this is basically true. Home will never be the place you remember from your childhood. It will always look different through the eyes of prolonged absence. But there are times when going home is the only answer. Sometimes when life has gotten so strange and big, when the journey has taken you off in so many directions all at once, going home can actually be a way to center oneself again and combine the person you were with the one you have become. And sometimes when the road you seemed to be traveling so peacefully comes to an abrupt halt, coming home can be like a jump-start into the next chapter of life.
The Decatur Transfer House
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Whenever I find myself in a new place I ineveitably end up looking for a place to think, to get away from everyone and everything and find solitude. A place to commune with myself and absorb and take in all that is around me. It may sound strange but I find it absolutely necessary. When my senses are being bombarded by new faces, new experiences, new flavors of life, I find that I need to find a place to go to and absorb it all, take it in, weigh it and balance it and finally make it mine. If we are truely the sum of our experiences I don’t want to miss a thing. I want everything to count.