Monday, April 2, 2012

The Norman Medieval Fair

I guess I have something of a unique relationship with the barony of Namron. The best way to describe it is to say that they have some really cool toys, and once a year, if I can make it, they  let me (an outsider) come out and show them off for a few hours at Medfair.

And when I say "toys", let me go ahead and spell that out for you. They have "Persuasion", a fully functional, SCA combat-legal trebuchet, and a fully functional, SCA combat-legal ballista. For anyone who ever had a penchant for knocking over sofa-cushion fortresses and storming sandcastles, these are the tools of childhood dreams.

This past Saturday, it was a hot, sticky, uncomfortable day when I showed up with my wife and son. I shook hands with, and hugged  people I hadn't seen in too long, then presented myself to the baroness, offering my services.

The first hour was spend gladly melting on the list-field, calling pairings for the fighters, adding pomp and show to the fights while the fighters engage each other with their swords, and the crowd with their wit. I think it was Vincenttee (sp?) who traded out with me, pointing me towards water and shade for a few.

The truth be told, I think there was also a bit of a conspiracy afoot, no doubt my pomp and ceremony clashed to an extent with some of the more expediently minded members of the rapier community. But I hardly begrudge them that, and even now am grateful for the chance to have heralded on it for the time I did.

And then I got to stand by the entrance to the SCA encampment, and work the crowd, proclaiming the the majesty and marvel of war engines designed centuries before Columbus was born. Putting the big engines there was probably one of Namron's biggest strokes of genius; everyone from the very young, to the very old were drawn to the unusual, but familiar shapes of weapons from times past. Children no older than five, and combat veterans in their seventies, and anyone in between, stopped to look on in amazement, thus creating the perfect segue for me to eventually say "oh, and the people who made these are just over there, and they have a million other cool things to show you, too."

The heat won on around four in the afternoon, and I wound up retreating to the refuge of the hospitality tent so that I could get some desperately needed shade and rest. Without realizing it, I had burned myself out under several hours of direct sun and not enough water. My own fool fault really, but a survivable mistake.

In the end, I bid farewell to friends, and said a formal thank-you to the Baroness for welcoming me in, and letting share in Namron's fun for a while.

It was a good day, and one of many more that I hope to have as the year unfolds.

Lord Ivo Blackhawk
Protege to Master Robert Fitzmorgan
Kingdom of Ansteorra
"God save the King!"

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