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Yes, I am trying to get it all written down before I forget what happened when.

Not surprisingly, given the late night antics of my fellow campmates and party guests, I slept a bit later than I would've liked, grabbed a quick shower, jumped into my clothes, grabbed the gurdy and headed towards Merchant's Row. Had weather conditions been different, my attempt to shill an audience for the Wakefield Cycle performances might have succeeded. However, those out and about at that hour of the morning were busily trying to dry their gear or get necessities at the camp store.

I arrived at the first venue, Runestone Park, as the first play was getting set up. I suspect much of our small audience was comprised of family, troupe members and other supporters. Kuji started things off with some illusions, then "The Murder of Abel" was performed in Middle English. I suppose all that Chaucer has stuck, I had no problem understanding it. Another round of busking happened while the "Abel" team struck off for Venue 2 and the second troupe prepared to present "The Annunciation," also in dialect. "Annunciation" headed for the next venue and it was [personal profile] minstrlmummr's turn to busk. I particularly enjoyed her tale of the murder of the Sultan's jester. Then off she went and the puppet theatre of I Marvini presented "The Flight Into Egypt," complete with annotated commentary taken from The Wakefield Cycle For Dummies. Having me follow the puppets was genius. George and I did a bit of shtik with Marvin, then I played some travelling music, accompanied by the inevitable hurdy-gurdy demo. I may be the only performer out there who actually does one, but so few people have ever seen one, I've gotten used to answering questions. (I forgot to pass my bowl. I don't normally like to do this at SCA events, but Kuji insisted - if one busker doesn't do it, the others might not get a contribution.) As soon as "The Harrowing of Hell" was ready to go, I headed off for Venue 2, the amphitheatre near Merchant's Row.

This pretty much summarizes the routine for the day. It was sort of like a ride-and-tie  relay, only with performers. I'd catch up to "Egypt," do my thing, then it was off to Venue 3, House Hedgehog, down in one of the E blocks near the lake.  They were one of the sponsors who had contributed funds to the Known World Players for this project so I was hesitant to pass my bowl, but one of the audience members insisted on it.

On my way back up hill to the final venue, Aethelmearc Royal, I see a man in a loincloth poised on the edge of a dumpster. "Don't jump!" I cry, "It can't be that bad." Dumpster diving for tent poles is how I met someone I know from another forum. Nice guy who always has something kind to say, and one of the few at Pennsic who goes around with very little on that can get away with it.

At Aethelmearc Royal, the sun was strong and there was a stiff breeze. More shade at the performance venue would've been nice, but I crowded in under the sunshade for the audience for my bit and FINALLY got to see "The Harrowing." Again, this was in Middle English. Rhonwyn was terrific as Satan.

We finished ahead of schedule. I walked over to the food court for a cold drink and ran into Geoffrei St. Albans and his lady. We sat in the shade and caught up with each other for a bit, then I headed over to Yama Kaminari, thinking I'd catch the second class on Japanese Festival Dance. That was a mistake. Solveig-hime has a tendency to talk in hypertext to begin with and sense made soon need lie food down now sorry go camp back dance not can. In other words, I went back to West Royal and pounded down some water and put my feet up for awhile.

After a rain delay, Their Majesties held court. I didn't feel I had contributed anything to the war effort at that point so I did not leave my seat when they named pretty much everyone else Defenders of the West. However, I here confess a few cynical thoughts that participating in a five mile hike in turnshoes carrying  eight pounds of hurdy gurdy for a full day of period entertainment of the rest of the Known World does not match up to plying the Known World with drink until 4:30 AM, which is why George and I are not Paragons of Merriment and the party crew are. That, and the fact that all I'd had to eat that day was one turkey and cheese roll-up, made me apologize to Vyncent that I could not wait for the lovely meal-plan dinner they were going to serve because I was going to gnaw off a limb.

I grabbed some faux Chinese food from Delights of Cathay, inhaled it on a bench in the little "garden" behind Billy and Charlie's and then got up to play some more, next to [personal profile] acanthusleaf's shop. Midnight Madness had begun. A man walked down the road, saw me, grinned. I grinned back. He hesitated. I called, "Caught you smiling." He stopped dead, then came over and said, "Sorry, it's just that you look a lot like someone I used to know back east." "Well, Ransom, that would be because I am someone you used to know back east." 

I lapped both sides of Merchant's Row with the gurdy. Being able to walk and play is sort of my party trick. It assures that I tend not to wear out my welcome with the merchants and I always keep an ear out for other performers, stop playing as I walk through their sound shadow, then start again as soon as I am reasonably far away. Met another contact from the same forum as Dumpster Loincloth Guy, as well as a young lady who plays Celtic harp who is moving to Santa Cruz this fall.

Played in front of Claus' booth again, hung out a bit with Loriwyn, got to chat with Sabel for a bit and Loriwyn and I were going to try to jam, only Wolgemut showed up to play for dancing in the barn, so that idea was hosed for the night.  Torashi-dono wandered by looking very handsome in his green kataginu kamishimo. Why is it all the men I know who do Japanese all are (a) attractive, (b) live too far away to play with and (c) are all married or with someone? It is Just Not Fair.

Thursday.  I heard a mighty clatter, look left into Outlands Royal and sure enough, it's Otagiri-dono in the clanging kusazuri that he means to replace. "If it's Thursday, it must be Japanese," he quipped, observing my stripped kosode and obi, before marching out to fight with his own kingdom. 
Rain, rain and more rain. Lots of it. I hiked my kosode high, completely waterlogged my waraji-zori.
 Staffan, being the kind of guy who spent all week running around camp battening down tents and such, dashed to Merchant's Row with an umbrella to rescue Eliana. Poor guy spent most of the week soaked.

So we sat inside West Royal. A lot. I had beer at one point because it was raining and the cooler with the water in it was in the "family room." During a break in the rain, I went out with Her Majesty and some other ladies to Pillaged Village. HM needed some tokens, I just needed to get out of that tent for awhile.

His Majesty returned with French Foreign Legion caps with the West's arms on the back flaps for all the fighters. It's so wrong, but who can argue with Royal Whim?

Vyncent and Vittoria's  dinner was delicious and the company was congenial, but all that rain made me need to get out of there. Since Saiako-hime had invited me, I spent the evening over at YK sitting in the Clan "living room" with Otagiri-dono, Erin, Alejandro and various other folks whose names I didn't know. I finally introduced myself to Ogami-sensei. "I hear you have a really big hat," he said. I had to explain that the really big hat had to stay home because I couldn't get it in my luggage. "Next time, drop ship it to me!" Erin offered.  Otagiri-dono said he felt like a lousy host because all he had were some nuts back in his hut and maybe some ramen. So I pulled a 300 ML bottle of Wandering Poet and some plastic cups from my haversack and began to serve it out. "Poet" may be my favorite sake, smooth, light and clean. We discussed a possible Tousando party at Estrella or Pennsic and I offered to help out with it.  As always, Otagiri-dono escorted me back to camp at the end of the evening. Shortly after, Eliska came looking for me. "There's a lady here looking for you!" It was Ana. Ana was glowing. Ana had been dragged out of the class she was teaching, taken to vigil and then made a member of the Order of the Laurel for her poetic talents. I am so pleased for her. It is well deserved.

Friday, Baroness Katherine hauls a huge furoshiki full of more Japanese swag out and puts it all out on a table in the Royal. I claimed the furoshiki itself as it was a lovely piece of shibori, and a pair of snips, insisting I didn't want to hog things and that someone else should have a shot at the goodies. "Do you know someone who would appreciate this?" She produced a suito (gourd canteen) with an orange cord. I knew who I had to pass that onto and told her I would do so. (We finally found a taker for the lacquer box, but I still ended up with a brand new pair of pawlonia geta because nobody else wanted them.)

Staffan decided to commemorate my being mistaken for a Lady of the Rose by presenting me with a pewter rose brooch from Billy and Charlie's.

As the West's "Legionaires" marched out of camp down Servants' Path, I began to sing "La Marseillaise," in a strong voice. Who knew I would remember the lyrics?

I did more busking. I was hoping to jam with Loriwyn, but that never gelled. She had a gig out in the B blocks and was long gone, but I copped a bit of shade and had a cold drink and chatted with Galen for a bit. I also scored the last few yards of some nice brown linen from the fabric lady who had reduced prices so she wouldn't have to take it home.

Solveig-hime had rescheduled her incense class, so I went over to YK. It was just me, Genbei-dono, Torashi-dono and his lady (whose name I cannot remember). Had it been a real incense ceremony, the guests would not have seen the preparations, but Solveig-hime demonstrated the arrangement of charcoal and ash to get the aromatic woods properly heated. I love aloeswood.  I've  promised a scouting mission to Japantown at some point to see if I can find reasonable sources for tea and incense ceremony supplies to replenish her stock.

I handed off the shopping bag to Otagiri-dono, who went wide eyed when he saw the suito. Katherine included her card so he can thank her properly. He was fretting about misplacing his cash (he found it later while packing). I wanted to get dinner and change into wafuku, I was hot and wanted those damned stockings off. I said I was going back to WK to change and would meet him by the ATM. Then he refused to let me pay for my dinner, which was raspberry cobbler with ice cream. You know, sometimes you just have to have dessert for dinner and this was one of those times.

Solveig-hime's students presented three short kyogen (comic plays) and did a creditable job. "Oh, you have to stay for Karaoke night!" she said. Hachirou came out in a Beadazzled white "Elvis" kimono with huge sleeves and MC'd the proceedings. First there was a Norman Knight pinata for the children in camp to swing at. Then, in honor of the Clan's 20th anniversary, the karaoke theme was 80's tunes, sung with Badu Japanesu Accent, Verry Roudry and With Fearing. While I did not get tapped to perform, Otagiri-dono is probably never going to let me live down the fact that I was singing along.  "So, what do you think?" Ogami-dono asked me when the prizes had been awarded. Me: "I shavu regs for dis?"

Saturday was tear-down. Took a couple hours for the sun to get high enough to start pulling down tents, but I dragged my groundcloth out and laid out my towels and helped Thea inventory and box camp supplies for storage. Alan and a very tired Niall loaded the truck. Edith had to leave early, so I took care of getting her tent down and stowed. Otagiri-dono, drippy haired and fresh from a shower, showed up looking for me. He helped me get my tent torn down and packed before heading back to Colorado. Finest kind, him. I am very glad we got to spend more time together this Pennsic.

Pittsburgh to Chicago flight was uneventful. Chicago to San Francisco was an hour late and overbooked. If we'd come in on time, I could've taken BART to Oakland and gotten home with a $20 cab fare. Instead I had a $67 cabfare from SFO. Oh, well......

Date: 2007-08-13 09:21 am (UTC)
ext_51796: (working_made-by-minakon_icon)
From: [identity profile] reynardine.livejournal.com
Thanks for the description of the Wakefield Cycle. I saw the puppet theater in your pictures and was intrigued, since when I was in high school (long and long ago), working at Scarborough Faire down in Texas, I helped out with the puppet plays (the puppeteer was a good friend of mine). One sees so little medieval theater that it is a treat to know that people are out there performing it.

I had wondered if S-dono was much the same in person as she was online.

Date: 2007-08-13 01:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gurdymonkey.livejournal.com
You know, for the longest time I thought that if S and I ever met in person, there would be a matter-antimatter explosion that would destroy the planet. She's been driving me crazy for years, even though someone told me that she's got mild Asberger's syndrome which is why she thinks and writes the way she does. She's still as disorganized and dotty as you would expect and her method of teaching dance is THE most frustrating process I've ever engaged in, but she's also very sweet so you find yourself thinking, "Oh, well." We got along just fine.

Date: 2007-08-13 03:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mamapduck.livejournal.com
Staffan became one of my favorite people while I was wrangling Kara's court. He's a total sweetie and always around when someone needs a hand. He's like a walking, talking PLQ.

Date: 2007-08-13 04:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vsct-caius.livejournal.com
Is this person ready for/does he have a QoG?

Sorry; heraldic short-speak. Just in case...

OK, I'm awake now....

Date: 2007-08-13 04:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gurdymonkey.livejournal.com
Hmm, methinks I need to write a letter to someone. ;-D (He does have a POG from the Mists tho'....)

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