Friday, March 02, 2007

A Dream in Blue... and Red, and Yellow, and Green

I got stuck in Zurich for an extra day - and before you all turn away and disgustedly say "oh, poor you, boo hoo!" - keep in mind that I was away from my family for *5* days, and spent roughly a total of 26 hours on various airplanes. And also that being gone for 5 days does not buy you a vacation from motherhood when you get back; today is a regular work day for my husband, and a non-school day for Ben.
And then there's my favorite - jet lag.

I do my best to fake myself out, which is to say I try not to look at my watch showing the current local time at home. I was going to spell it out for you all - the disparity in hours, etc. - but I know that this will not help me the next time I'm away, staring at the ceiling in the middle of the night. And, indeed, I did make that mistake during the first night of my layover in Zurich. I finally got about 2 1/2 hours of sleep before the wake-up call from the hotel desk. The "wake-up" call - to inform me my new "wake up" time was 8:30... tomorrow morning. That doesn't help when you've already downed your second cup of tea, but I managed to make good use of an extra day. One of my co-workers and I had taken the street car into downtown Zurich Tuesday afternoon, and since our tickets were good for 24 hours from the time of purchase we went into town again Wednesday morning.

There is a cathedral in Zurich called the Fraumuenster for which the artist Marc Chagall designed some amazing windows. We tried to get in on Tuesday but got there 38 minutes after the closing time of 4:00 pm. We had better luck on Wednesday. Of course I didn't have my camera with me, but the post cards I bought are better than any photos I would have attempted:

(left) Detail from "Christ's Window": Mary with the Child in the tree of Jesse

(right) Detail from"Jacob's Window": An angel on Jacob's ladder



left to right: "Prophet's Window," "Jacob's Window," Chrits's Window," "Zion Window," "Law Window"

The three windows shown center are on one wall, and the two flanking windows are on the left and right adjoining walls. You can see the angel detailed in the "Jacob's Ladder" window up there at the top of the second window. I found the following description of the windows here:

In 1967, Marc Chagall – then 80 – accepted the commission to make new stained glass for the five 10m-high choir windows. The stunning artistry of the windows he produced makes them one of the highlights of Z├╝rich. Chagall lovers from all over the world visit Zurich's Fraumunster, formerly the church of the convent for noblewomen, to admire the five choir windows there. Red - Prophets window Blue - Jacob window Green - Christ window Yellow - Zion window Blue - Law window Entrance into the transept through the small east door beneath the spire, and attention is so concentrated on the choir that you may well find the rest of the church has been roped off.

The main church sanctuary was not roped off, and the organ was all opened up with its "innerds" showing. It was a wet and stormy day - not too many visitors - actually a great day to visit!

I'm back home now, but I missed a planned excursion with my sister to the sewing expo. If you are interested in ANY fiber arts at all, you'd love this. It's a 4 day event that draws visitors from all over the US and Canada. I have been only once - my mom watched Ben while Kim and I spent a few solid hours browsing, filling our bags with "free samples!" and shopping. This year was going to work out perfectly: Thursday was a school day for Ben and the day my mom was going to work one of the booths. Kim and I were going to meet Mom for lunch. It would have been fun. But all is not lost, my mom and I will probably go together tomorrow - my husband has graciously offered this possibility, even after 5 days of full-time daddy duty! He and Ben plan to take in a matinee at the local theater. A good time all around.

Anyway, looking at those gorgeous windows, and fantasizing about all the lovely things at the expo has got me thinking about crafts again. I love working with wool felt, and a few years ago I ordered a little kit from Magic Cabin to make friendship hearts which spawned in me a little obsession.

There have been many others as well, given away as gifts.

Another kit I ordered after picking up her book Felt Wee Folk was the Bud and Ivy kit from Sally Mavor. I made one for myself and found them so charming that I ordered three more to make and give as gifts to my three little nieces. I then made three coordinating felt heart necklaces to carry the dolls around in.

"Bud and Ivy" dolls in unfinished heart necklaces

I have a nice fat stack of wool felt waiting for me at my crafty corner, and a head swimming with blue angels. I am going to the sewing expo tomorrow. I am in heaven!