Recently, I enjoyed a return engagement to teach two workshops to the St. Andrew Bay Quilt Guild of Panama City, FL. When I was last there in 2017, things were fine. Now they are six months post-Hurricane Michael and things are not fine:
There is still much work to do and the area of Panama City where the guild meets is under reconstruction. My hotel this trip had to be at Panama City Beach, across the Causeway. It rained a lot the first day but the large class of 20 was high and dry making Antique Rose Star blocks by Machine:
The second day many of these women returned and we added a couple more to make 5 Easy Pieces:
Lots of geese were made--those new to paper piecing learned some good tips and really enjoyed the accuracy they achieved.
At the end of the day, it is so nice to have students say "I hope you'll come back". Hopefully, their lives will be a bit more back to normal--many stores in Panama City are still closed, some never to reopen.
I did make a stop at Quilting by the Bay--they have reopened in their smaller building next door--much work is still needed on the main building. Life is very different for so many of the people there. Even the guild has lost members who have moved away and don't expect to come back.
After teaching, my husband and I headed west to Ocean Springs, MS, where he has family. When I saw the sign for the new Buc-ee's on I-10 I said "you just haven't lived until you've been to Buc-ee's" so we stopped at this very large "convenience" store:
It felt like a reunion with the quilters of St. Andrew Bay--several showed me their finished Two-for-One quilts from my last visit. Thank you, ladies, for making me feel so welcome.
And we certainly ate great meals--dinner each of the three nights was seafood. My husband had a meal he declared one of his all-time top 10--at the The Grand Marlin, Panama City Beach.