The US Embassy London and US Ambassador Johnson's private quarters
Taking the call
Filming the making
Making the film
Six of the Red Dragon Flagmakers team drove up to London and met with Ambassador Johnson who couldnt have been more welcoming, less stuffy and more of a secret flag nerd. He sat us all down in front of a picture of Eisenhower in his private office, gave us tea in porcelain tea cups and saucers, impressive chunky chocolate cookies and a considerable amount of time. He asked us all about ourselves, seemed very taken with Fitz' white and black spotty outfit, shoes and hair bow and seemed very interest in what was involved in the making of flags and what we thought of the flags within the Embassy. We commented that they were all printed and looked a bit tired - oh and that they could do with being replaced with professional traditional sewn flags and he took it all in his stride and seemed delighted at the suggestion (purchase order still pending as at the date of writing :)).
After our meeting with the Ambassador Johnson we were given a private tour of the Embassy and all the amazing work spaces they have created for their staff. Every floor has a garden relating to different parts of the US which reflect the climates in plant types and temperatures. The glass walls of the gymnasium (missile proof by the way) are decorated with tiny stars to help deter birds from killing themselves by breaking up their reflection.
We learned that there has only ever been one female US Ambassador to London and she was in place for 1 year, that Ambassador Johnson's favourite flag picture and flag in the Embassy is of a 10 year old girl carrying a Scottish Saltaire and that the glass chandelier hanging over the eating stairwell within the Embassy is made up of hundreds of replica glass Embassy seals and that one out of the many is upside down.
After the visit we all needed a sit down and catch up on the visit, so we headed off to Chelsea and lunch in a pub before climbing back in the car and driving back to Swansea.
A note from the RDF Boss
As the boss of Red Dragon Flagmakers I was incredibly proud of the team who took the once in a lifetime opportunity in their stride, were at all times funny, gracious and importantly, themselves. I believe we all impressed him with our Welsh down to earth approach and we left him with a smile on his face, a signed (by our Chairman Robin Ashburner) book of British Flags and Heraldry, a traditional sewn Red Dragon flag and a stack of Welsh cakes.
The Ambassador's commendation
What an absolute treat to receive a tweet from Ambassador Johnson later on that same day commending Red Dragon Flagmakers for our skills and work. Such a lovely thing for him to do and very much appreciated.