Pennsic 2016 Diary: Thursday, August 11

Morning – Marauders

The show was a ton of fun. I always love Marian’s Pennsic shows. She did some stuff I’d never heard before, including one of the new songs from Queens of Avalon and several poems. I sat next to Aibhilin, who was also one of the “and friends,” and we geeked out together and fangirled over Marian’s performance. For my “and friend” part, Aibhilin recorded me, so now I have a recording of myself performing. Yay! I did the story of King Conrad, and then Marian requested that I do a second piece, so I did Mary wins a tournament. (Yes, I did the same piece twice on a Pennsic stage – Friday and yesterday – but I didn’t have any other pieces polished enough to do them on “drop of the hat” notice.)

Brought some of the bards (including Marian) back to camp afterwards with the lure of chocolate, and we wound up in a small circle of me, Lorelei, Lucia, and a lady whose name I’ve forgotten (sorry, m’lady!). It was lovely, just the four of us singing softly with harmonies. Mostly we did songs with sing-along choruses so we could all join in, even if we didn’t know the verses.

Went to bed around 1 am, though it took the better part of an hour to go to sleep. It was another hot and sticky night, around 22 degrees in my tent even at 1 am. Sigh. Woke up around 7:15 to use the privy and then went back to bed until 8:30. (I love that my tent lets me do that.)

Even having taken my antihistamine, my eyes are already starting to itch. I’ve sternly told my body that it needs to last the next 28 hours. We’ll see if it listens to me. Stupid allergies.

My mid-day planning unexpectedly got more complicated last night. The one thing I wanted to do today was the mini bardic madness from 12 to 2. And then Marian announced that she’ll be in front of Camelot Treasures at 11:30 doing bardic. Gah! Want both! Where’s my time-turner?! I guess I’ll figure it out. I’ll probably start out with Marian and see how things are going.

I had a shower this morning (yay clean!) – probably my last shower of War. I’d wanted to do some pre-packing in my tent, but it’s already too hot (33 degrees). I guess I’ll wait until sunset. It’s not like I have much – pretty much all I need to do is fold up the clothes in my hamper and put them back in the totes. The bed packing will need to wait until tomorrow morning.

And now Aibhilin’s back. Time to see if she wants to do a little bardic swap meet.


Early afternoon – Marauders

A fun morning abruptly cut short. After writing last, Aibhilin and I had a fun hour swapping (and recording) songs. Yay songs!

I headed over to Bhakail to get Suba to perform “The Anachronism Tango” while I recorded her. Thanks, Suba!

Then down to Efenwealt’s via Erwillian’s. I performed a few pieces for the latter (St. Barlaam’s lesson about the nightingale, and the parable of the city with the foreign king), and then kept moving. Marian was just sitting everyone in a circle under a tree near Camelot Treasures when I showed up. We spent about an hour, and some of the pieces were really amazing. Cedar did their Einherjar song again; a woman whose name I don’t remember but who was one of Aibhilin’s guests at her concert did a phenomenal two-song Arthurian set, one of which was a stupendous round in 4-part harmony; Colette did a great song about the giving of rings… phenomenal stuff. I did “Marian doesn’t like wool,” which went over well and segued to a discussion about how what we really need next year is a puppet theatre that passers-by can use to make little shows. Sadly, at about this time, we started hearing thunder and my radar app was showing that a cell was about to drop down right on top of us, and the circle broke up.

I could have gone to the mini bardic madness – it was very nearby. But I had a sneaking suspicion I’d forgotten to batten my tent this morning. And while my campmates are awesome and usually close my front doors, most don’t think about the back ones (nor should they). And while I make sure my stuff is well prepared so that nothing gets wet in my tent when it rains, I had not accounted for open doors.

So I raced back to camp, my feet sliding in my crocs (aka my shower shoes) as I went. The rain started with pitter-patter and opened for real as I was at the food court. I could have stopped under an awning, but that would defeat the purpose of rushing back to camp. I got wet. Very wet. Came back to camp, rushed to my tent, and realized that, yes, my doors had been left open. Most of my gear was fine, but the rug by the back door was pretty sopping (it’s plastic, so it’ll be fine) and some of the canvass tent bags had gotten damp. I lay them out on my bed to dry them out and patted down the rug as best I could. I had a scare where I thought the bottom of my laundry hamper had gotten wet, and it had, but the clothes themselves were fine. Whew!

Anyway, now fully battened, I came back to the common area and that’s where I am now. There are still 45 minutes left to mini-madness, but I don’t think I’ll make it back in time. Also, I’m hungry and should probably eat something. Also-also, I’m damp and disgusting. I hope the sun comes out to dry my clothes, but I suspect it won’t. I hope I’m not damp all day. I feel like ick. At least all the stuff in my bag stayed dry. Yay wool!

No idea what I’m doing next, though.


Mid-afternoon – Marauders

Apparently what I’m doing next involved getting lunch, running some errands, and then hanging out at camp. I could go elsewhere, but I really don’t want to move. At the very least I finally performed “Beowulf for Kids” for the camp, which I really wanted to happen at some point.

I’m very tired now. It’s very hot. Humidex is 37 degrees according to NOAA. Apparently we’re gonna start camp tear-down tonight, which I approve of. Less to do tomorrow, which would be good if tomorrow is like today.

It’s really weird to not want to move at Pennsic, but I really don’t. I want to sleep. Or get ice cream. One of the two.


Slightly later – Same place

Watching a half-dozen kids in camp play D&D makes my geek heart happy. One of the little girls just ran up to one of the little boys and said, “You get 50 gp from the gnome.” Awesome!


Sunset – My tent

Went to the Bardic Symposium this afternoon. The topic was nominally about bardic and the “allied” performing arts, but conversation eventually drifted to creating venues and the value of top-down organization vs. grassroots development. Good discussion but I was very hot and tired and really wanted to just lie down.

Came back to camp, ate an early dinner (so as not to compete with all the Ansteorrans who were at court), brushed teeth and called Marc, and then immediately launched into preliminary camp cleanup. We’re trying to get as much stuff packed up tonight as we can, because it’s comparatively cooler now (and “comparatively” is a relative term) and tomorrow looks to be a repeat of today. As with setup, there’s a level of organized chaos to it all, with everyone running around trying to get everything done, but only a few key people who actually know where everything goes. I got my second tunic of the day drenched when I hadn’t realized some of the dishes had accumulated water. I said words I probably should not have said in the presence of children.

I felt myself hitting the wall so I came back to my tent. I can’t people right now. I may not even be capable of standing up right now. I’m drinking water and being quiet in an attempt to rally my energies for a second sortie against the enemy, aka all the stuff that needs to be packed. (“Storm the front gate again! They’ll never see it coming a second time!”)

I want to sleep, but it’s only 8:15, there’s still camp stuff to do, I have to pack up my own stuff to be ready for load-out tomorrow, and if I’m really lucky I’ll be able to head out to South Winds tonight for bardic. It’s my last night of War – I’d really like to get some bardic in. I want go out with a bang, not a whimper. (Or, in this case, not a nap.) I hate this weather so much. I’m ready to be done with it all. Like, now.


Past sunset – My tent

My wooden bead necklace just broke as I was going to put it on. Naturally. Because that’s just the sorta night I’m having. I guess I have another mending project for next year. At least I think I recovered all the beads.

Unrelated: it’s a half-hour past sunset and still 25 degrees in my tent with 88% humidity. I can’t even.


Late night – My tent

In the end, an altogether satisfactory last night of War. After packing up some of my own stuff and assuring myself there was nothing else camp-related I’d need to do, I decided to do one final wander in search of bardic. I stopped in at Heralds2 to give hugs to Ernst but he wasn’t there, so I headed over to High Rafters instead. There was no bardic, but there was “tin foil hat night.” Some of the tin foil hats were pretty elaborate, actually. Got to sit with Fiana, Morgana, Cerian, and Dorigen and talk bardic shop and help Fiana brainstorm some stuff for her “Angel of Death” sequel. Good stuff. [Editor’s note: Link goes to mp3 of original “Angel of Death” story.]

I left rather abruptly when one of the camp members started smoking. I didn’t want a repeat of whatever night it was when my lungs were super-unhappy with me.

And now I had a choice. It was 10:30 and I was tired. I could have called it a night so I’d be rested for the drive tomorrow. Or I could continue on in search of bardic. As I was prevaricating, I got a message from Dahrien saying the South Winds bardic had started up and I decided 10:30 was a ridiculous bedtime anyway.

Up to Dagan’s Dell I trudged. I found the approximate right place but it took me a while to find the exact camp. When I walked in there were about a half-dozen people and we topped out at about a dozen when I left, including Maraha, Dervilla, Cerian, and William. Since it was small and informal, I did some of my sillier pieces including “Beowulf for Kids,” “Wild Eastman Spam,” “The Feast Song,” etc. Cerian did his Barbara Allen song, one of the gentles did Rosalind’s feast song, and William did his (it’s all about trying to prepare a feast around dietary restrictions). All in all, a fun way to close out the War.

Left around midnight and watched the beautiful lightning storm to the south of us, all while hoping it doesn’t hit Pennsic proper. So far, so good.

My allergies have been holding out so far. Fingers crossed that they let me get to noon or so tomorrow, or at least long enough to pack up and give final hugs. Nice weather would be a welcome bonus.

Tired now, though it’s still very hot. Hopefully I’ll be able to get some sleep. More in the morning.

Back to Wednesday, August 10
Forward to Friday, August 12

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