Sunday, May 16, 2004

Heh heh . . . Horn.

Yesterday, Jen, Kevin, Dani and I ventured out into the mountains of Santa Barbara in search of the Heart of the Forest Renaissance Faire being held at Live Oaks Camp. My, what a most beauteous day to be out among the oaks! It was just warm enough to not need sweaters, but not as hot as it usually gets at RenFaire (which is so hot that those of us in garb who do not continually have a full cup, mug, or tankard will probably pass out). Live Oaks is shady and beautiful, and only about half as dirty as other faires I've been to, which I would venture is largely due to the high concentration of fallen leaves lining the dirt pathways. Heart of the Forest is a significantly smaller faire than I'm used to, but it's something I'm going to have to get used to as there will be no more NorCal Pleasure Faire. Heart of the Forest comes to Novato sometime this summer. If Novato is anywhere as shady as Live Oaks, I'll be there for certain.

Becauase its a smaller faire in size of location, that means its a smaller faire in terms of present merchants. Lots of different merchants, though fewer of them, a smaller trader's market, smaller jousting area, no fencing tournaments, fewer games, and a smaller variety of foods. (No beansteaks. Oh well. I'll live, now that I know how damned good the pitas are at faire!) But even though this was a smaller, quieter faire, it was still just as much fun. And had just as many performance stages as any other.

The four of us took in a good number of performances that day (more than most times I go to faire, where my friends at home are bastards and don't want to watch any shows). We saw a 2-man Pyramus & Thisbe, which required a volunteer from the audience, so, naturally, Jen and I made Kevin do it. Because its fun to embarass people. Pyramus & Thisbe was followed by 12 min. Hamlet--which was hilarious, as it was also performed with only two people. We also took in Taming of the Shrew (reduced to about half an hour), and two dance performances--country and Celtic. Some of the Celtic dancers were really amazing. They've obviously been doing it for years and years, probably since they were wee mites, because their calves are so finely muscled and their backs held so straight.

We made a few purchases of finery--mostly from Fellowship Foundry. I said this year was the year I was finally going to get a tankard so I wouldn't have to carry around the giant 2 liter bottles of Aquafina they sell at faire. I purchased a hammer-topped cup with a kitten for the handle, leaning her head in to drink. I'm going to take it everywhere. I'll start bringing it into the dining commons and snubbing their shitty glasses. The girl at Fellowship even custom set the cat's eyes for me (red) and put different eyes in the mouse that sits opposite the cat, looking terrified (green). I will be the only one with a cup like this one. Jen bought one of Fellowship's fairy necklaces and purchased a Leaf of Lothlorien necklace for Heather. She also got a couple of glass leaf pendants from another vendor, who educated us about peircing in the Renaissance. Dani bought a little wire box on a necklace from him. She's planning on putting herbs in it so that it will be like a sachet. I also purchased a drinking horn.

And when we went to Natalie's pirate and wench party that night, the horn was the hit of the evening. Jen and Dani borrowed my corsets and bodices to dress for the occasion (in fact, everything Jen was wearing was mine: corset, skirt, belt, boots, necklace, jacket--all mine), but I just stayed in my faire garb. Burgandy bodice, black skirt, big white chemise with celtic knotwork down the sleeves, burgandy muffin cap and my belt full of fun accessories: my dragon pouch, 4 feather ticklers, the lambswool handcuffs, my lambskin whip, the dragon tankard strap, my brand new kitten cup, and, of course, the drinking horn. I took all my drinks from the horn (3 rum and cokes, 2 strawberry vodkas) and showed people how to drink from the horn. I had many a conversation about RenFaire and my garb. From now on, I bring the drinking horn to every party I go to. And next time I go to faire, I am getting one for Nikki Ferry. Because Nikki loves the horn.

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