It’s too damned hot! April was cold, and June was rainy, but this last week it’s been in the 90s. We have been hiding inside when ever possible. It wasn’t possible while we were at the event, of course, and it was punishingly hot. Since it had been cool the few days leading up to the event, I had been careful to pack warm clothing so that Kat wouldn’t get hypothermia, but I’m getting ahead of myself.
Perhaps not, it’s what we did this week. Thursday we packed in the morning and drove to the event. It was in Schaghticoke, NY, a straight shoot across the bottom of Vermont. Since we had the trailer, which doesn’t particularly like Hogback, we asked the GPS to take the southerly route (I’m thinking Route 2?) but it ignored those requests and over we went. It was raining pretty hard all morning, but was done by the time we got there, and with the groundcloth we just set up. My inflatable mattress finally died, so we found a Walmart and got another. (The girls prefer cots.) After that we went out to a lovely Chinese restaurant, which we enjoyed.
We set our tables up in a long L on two sides, leaving most of the space in the tent for the beds, tables, chairs, etc.. We opened both sides (north and east), for maximizing the amount of air coming through and shade. I rather liked it. There were tiny ants we first noted when pounding in the stakes, and rather large beetles of some sort, at least they didn’t bite, but they did crawl on us, which was disturbing. Poor Kat was bitten badly by the ants, many times. I didn’t sympathize enough until one bit me, and it HURT. At that point I gave her a bunch of retroactive sympathy- luckily Benadryl plus oops ointment seemed to help, but if they weren’t fire ants, they were close enough as makes no difference! We swept VERY carefully when we packed up.
I heard later that this was then site where they have the War of the Roses, a traditional event that goes back to Tamera Fitzglostre, but we haven’t been in over 20 years, so hadn’t seen it. The Merchants are set up on one end of the fairgrounds and the campers at the other- kudos to everyone who was willing to walk over to see us! In the middle were many typical fairground buildings, two of them housed “The Halls of History”. Since my feet are still not wholly healed, I went through the first one Friday, the second on Saturday, and on Sunday I went up to see the Memorial Garden. Sadly, I forgot to allocate time to go to the arts and sciences display.
I gave my Anglo-Saxon class both Friday evening and Saturday morning (bless them for honoring my request for the coolest time of day. They weren’t very full, and broke up early. Friday night there was court at 7, so we sort of drifted over to see what was happening (the class started at 6.) I guess I didn’t need two hours- people drifted off after one hour to do archery and other things for the Saturday class too. But I got to see the dolls then. The Halls of history contained tables and booths for each branch to display the history of their group. One had a wonderful display of pilgrim badges, another had ancient helmets. Some had video displays with people telling stories. Eowyn put up Carolingia, and had copies of old calendars, and Carolingian songbooks! Ours was graced with the calligraphed books of the History of Stonemarche that Harald has been keeping. I could have spent much more time looking at them if my feet would have allowed. I sat in at the Stonemarche table for a couple of hours, but wasn’t really able to answer any questions about our past. There was one for the Kingdom with a large display of various crowns- the ones they weren’t wearing. There was also a display from Acre- the group that split off from the East after the Crown tourney that inspired Knight Riders.They had three copies of the treaty- but not the original one that Ælfwine and I and Suny and (spacing the kings name Kriegstaffen?) had made. We’d been there at the split and figured it was stupid to keep feuding any longer, and created the first treaty- but that one seems to have gone missing. Oh well. They’ll look for it now.
The dolls were a project by a lady who collected photos of as many of the kings and queens (figure two per year) and dressed the dolls in outfits based on the pictures. I would have been a bit happier had they not used coronation pics, because often Coronation robes are not typical. Asbjorn always wore that same blue and white tunic for years- but his coronation tunic was white brocade. Goody dressed me in green for coronation because she was tired of seeing me in red, so while the basic idea (Saxon, green, blonde hair) was fair, it wasn’t recognizable. Bless them, they didn’t make the dolls tall or short or pad the ones who should have been a bit rounder. It was a little disorienting to see Cariadoc’s and Finnvarr’s dolls the same height, but it was still an amazing project!
On the way back to the shop I noted that they had a food truck, so the girls were able to indulge in some fries (a great treat in the heat). We also went out in the morning- there was a grocery store within sight just across the road. We got ice and gatorade. We re-upped the ice three times a day. We ate as we do at Pennsic, a baked good at breakfast, crudités, summer sausage and cheese for lunch, and a cooked supper. I’d brought steak for Friday and lumps of beef (with mushroom) for Saturday evening.
Kiaya was running the children’s point and brought the sheep again. I’m sure there were many other things to do, but between the heat the classes and selling, mostly we just sat and sweated.
Ewan and his lady were over on one side of us, and Sedalia on the other. (Ewan’s van died a few miles from the site, so they were scrambling to get a rental to get back home, and get it disposed of by the end of the event!) I had not heard of Sedalia for several years, and then I heard that she had cancer so I thought she’d died, but she’d gone into remission and moved to Trimaris (Florida).
I took Willow’s advice and admitted that I didn’t remember names- except for my oldest friends, and it was a a lot of pressure off.
Frostalf (Tom) and his friends came by and we passed our old modern tent off to him to hold him until he can find one he wants. Brian came by, he went to see the Memorial Garden with me.
The garden had some very attractive potted plants, a labyrinth, and an “eternal flame”, as well as four panels on which were posted the memorial pages for far too many dead friends including Ælfwine, Kenric, El, Patri, Lisa, Laura, Aonghais, and others. While I was at the table Lucan came by (I didn’t recognize him- I picture him as he looked 20 years ago), and told us Kathy Peacock had died Thursday. Another one who stopped attending events, and I didn’t think about it until she was gone. Cancer. As Mother said “We all die, dear.” I only feel badly when we forget them. I feel rather guilty that I didn’t exert myself to find pictures of Laura and Lisa and Aonghais and others- so many people put in so much work, and the event was a once off- it will never happen again.
I was back at the tent during the court, only a few yards down the path, listening to periodic cheering as people got awards. Then we heard them singing: ♫ “Happy Birthday to you, (etc) Happy Birthday, East Kingdom, Happy birthday to you!” ♫ When court was over, we saw people going by with party hats and those curling up noisemakers you blow. What fun!
The queen had been by early on Friday, and we heard that she really wanted to get more shopping in, but as we well remember, she was herded from court to competition to whatever and never got back. It was a pity because Willow had made her a parasol with her badge on it. She was also working on painted fans. At the great Northeastern War one of the war points is awarded to the side that gathers more largess for the queen to pass out. She figures that a fan during a summer court is a really good piece of largess, and is putting the Eastern Tiger on them.
We had to leave on Sunday (although the site was open until Monday) because Willow had an appointment at the Tufts Dental clinic. We started packing up at noon, then from one to three was the last panel: The First 10 years of the East Kingdom. Besides myself they’d gathered (the) Michael of York, Vissevald, Elspeth, Steffan, Yoseph and Alsoune, and me. We had a great time talking (and fooling around on the group W bench). Someone brought us a bunch of popsicles and a cooler full of bottles of water. After a while two people who joined this century came and asked some questions, and we talked about a lot of stuff, like Camelot, and how we found the SCA. When I got back to the tent the girls had mostly emptied it, but it still took us two hours to get the tent down and in the trailer. We were seriously overheated. We got out around five, and not trusting the GPS, headed south until we spotted a sign for Rte. 90. Rte. 2 might have been better, but at the juncture of 90 and 91 we stopped at Cracker Barrel for dinner, and got home around 10.
I had a bit of a scare on Monday. I started working on the Witchtrials booklet around 11:30 (and doing the laundry, putting stuff away, etc.) when around 3 I realized I hadn’t seen Kat. I figured she was in her room with the Air Conditioning, working on her Loki cosplay. But she wasn’t there, and it took me a while until I got in touch with Willow to discover that Kat had gone with her. After Tufts, they went up and spent the rest of the day with Joanie and Raye. (Which was a great idea, but I wish I’d known!) Sadly, Willow is going to have to go to three more visits with the Tufts dentist before they can start on the implant procedure she wants. I am now thinking of seeing if I can do that too.
She scheduled the next two visits back to back tomorrow, because Avi and the kids are on vacation, and Tufts seems to understand that coming this far is hard. Making arrangements like that is emotionally hard, and on top of it Willow was having one of those “days”. She spilled her art masking stuff over her pens and had to peel it off them, spilled her drink under her desk, when she went downstairs she stepped on a rat Ambien had left in the kitchen, and her legs were still swollen from the hot weekend, and her foot feels like she has a horse shoe nailed to it- which I said sounds like Plantar Faciitis, (but she won’t have that!). It was a terrible, horrible, no good, really bad day
Today wasn’t bad. We had Mark and Steve up for a low-key barbecue. I came up with a novel idea- ask everyone what they want and don’t cook more than that. This was a bit complicated by the package of chicken I got. I thought it was a large number of split breasts, but no it was three LARGE split breasts. (I think each one could feed a family, and all three could feed a small Mexican village!) But we divided them. We had hot dogs and hamburgers (organic), with all the condiments, and I made potato salad, and fruit salad, and we had corn on the cob, and a small batch of the pink beens cooked in butter and cream. So we ate ourselves into food comas, Mark went home, the girls went up to try to finish their cosplays for Saturday, and John, Steve and I went over to Megan’s Independence Day party. It was much smaller this year- she often has 30 people but there were mostly people I recognized, Kathy and Beth, Aravis, Maria, and a few others. John got a chance to talk with Dennis and we came back home around 7.
Steve headed back down to Malden and I wrote the letter. Around 9 we went out and set off a few token fireworks. No politics this week, it’s too hot. If you want some of me being full of myself, I did a post on health and money on my website this week here
One good thing about being old: I’m too old to get “premature” anything! Tamar the Gypsy
Holidays coming up this week
Thursday 5 Apple Turnover Day, Graham Cracker Day, Bikini Day, Workaholic Day
Friday 6 Fried Chicken Day, Kissing Day, Comic Sans Day (what I like and use here)
Saturday 7 Strawberry Sundae Day, Macaroni Day, Chocolate Day, Forgiveness Day
Sunday 8 Chocolate w/Almonds Day, Ice Cream Sundae Day, Savor the Comic- Unplug the Drama
Monday 9 Sugar Cookie Day, No Bra Day, Town Criers Day, Call of the Horizon Day
Tuesday 10 Pick Blueberries Day, Pina Colada Day, Clerihew Day, Teddy Bear Picnic Day
Wednesday 11 Blueberry Muffin Day, Mojito Day, Ranier Cherries Day, Bowdler’s Day