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2008-09-02 10:07 PM
Highland War: The Vacation
Highland War: The Vacation - This past weekend, Labor Day, I went out to Victorville with the head of my household, to go camping at an event we call "Highland War." The site is an old (closed) Air Force Base, at a very green and grassy park. Typically the weather is very hot, and sometimes extremely windy, and this time was no exception.
My plans were to take it easy, arriving on Friday (which was a Regular Day Off, RDO, for me), serve Coffee Bar in the mornings, cook for Lot and Marcos, and after that just see what caught my fancy. I finished the weekend pleasantly surprised to say that I really "enjoyed a vacation" for the first time (that I can remember) at an SCA camping event.
Since it was burning hot when we arrived close to 4 pm on Friday, we were inclined to do absolutely nothing once it was dark. Our camp was set up before sundown, and a new friend and camping neighbor (Vithar) fed us his extra chicken franks, beans, and rice so we didn't even have to cook dinner. Master Donal had samples of several very good brews (all throughout the weekend), although I definitely preferred the brandied lemonade he brought out Friday night. Lot and I later wandered down to Royals, where I hung out for a bit with friends, sung a song or two, and just generally relaxed until I was too tired to stay up any later. Lot found himself doing "guard duty," wandering around with Her Majesty and friends, and that wrapped up our evening.
Saturday, I served Coffee Bar and made breakfast for Lot and Marcos in the morning, and then just wandered about a bit. I spent a good bit of time hanging out with friends from Isles (the group from Santa Barbara), Dreiburgen (the group from San Bernardino), my apprentice brother and his wife, and a few of my friends from Starkhafn (the group from Las Vegas). Because everyone knew it would be very hot during the day, most of the fighting wasn't until the very late afternoon and early evening, especially after sunset because there were very bright field lights that could be turned on. Jimena and Rhys had a wading pool to let their 22-month-old daughter play in, to stay cool, and several of us sat at the edge of the pool with our feet dangling in the cold water. For dinner I served chicken (with mushrooms, onions, garlic, and sliced tomatoes), asparagus, salad (with cranberries, candied pecans, tomatoes, dressing), more challah (egg bread), and French red wine. [I know, several non-medieval ingredients, both wow it was yummy camp food.] Vithar, who fed us on Friday, joined us for part of the meal, and we chatted about persona stories, "in character." Donal spent some time, giving me his peerage advice. And Lot and I went wandering to a few camps to sing, and I spent a good portion of the night with Isles again.
Sunday, the same routine of Coffee Bar and breakfast, and then lounging around to wait out the heat of the day. For the second day in a row, most of us sat in the shade, feet in the wading pool, not even wearing over-dresses -- just stripping to our under-dresses aka chemises. I have a wonderful time entertaining (and watching) Jimena & Rhys' daughter. I took a nap at one point in the afternoon, but I heard the crash of pottery. Over at my kitchen, the wind had knocked over all the clean breakfast dishes, and one of my small yellow cups broke. Oh well. I'll have to commission more yellow-glazed pieces from Hroar later. (One of my plates broke on the trip back from Pennsic. Ah well. As Collette always says, "You never really own glass. You merely take care of it for a while." I believe the same is true for pottery.)
In the afternoon, Lot and I attended a Bardic class, where we sang and entertained a dozen children, with Thomas Whitehart. Afterwards, we attended Their Majesties at Closing Court, and I helped Sir Ian lead the populace in his filked song, to fill a lag in the court schedule. And then before the sun was fully set, I spent some time with Gulliver, and he imparted his "advice to new peers" that he would have said at a Peerage Vigil. Baroness Robyn caught me right after I left Gulliver's, and I had a wonderful chat with her, too. Then tonight's dinner was chicken (in onions, garlic, soy sauce, and sliced tomatoes), green beans, lentils (with onions, garlic, mushrooms, and spinach), salad (with almonds, wontons, mandarin oranges, dressing, and optionally grapes and tomatoes), more challah (egg bread), and French red wine. This time a new friend from my first Shire, Giacomo [pronounced JA-kah-moh], joined us for the meal and conversation. We wrapped up the meal with an Italian dessert wine that was *wonderful* and then headed out for our evening.
I was really tired, so I took a brief nap after dinner. Lot thought that looked like a good idea, and he fell asleep too, but unfortunately Marcos didn't come by to wake either of us. Lot came and woke me up about 11:30 pm, and even though I made a valiant effort to wake up, and join him singing at Isles, I couldn't stay up much more than another 30-minutes, and went right back to bed.
Monday morning we packed up after breakfast, and about a dozen of us went to brunch together. Lot and I made it home in the early afternoon, and I picked up my computer and my roomie, and we went to Jeff's place. She helped us unload his truck, pack my car, and we visited with Adrienne and Benji for a little while. Sadly their internet was not working with my computer, so I couldn't work on the baronial newsletter or catching up on email, so I headed back home.
The roomie and I ended up having Italian for dinner, cookies from Bristol Farms, and back at the apt we watched the latest episode of Project Runway on my TiVo. For the next several hours I caught up on emails, and several computer tasks, then finally collapsed in bed.
Looking back on it all, I walked around barefoot for two days. I spent two afternoons with my feet in a wading pool, just relaxing with friends. I did just simple tasks like Coffee Bar, cooking dinner, singing, singing, more singing, and listening to Peers. It truly was a vacation.
* * * * *
Today's Blessing That I'm Thankful For: Donal, Gulliver, and Robyn
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