Monday, September 21, 2009

Coronation Weekend

First, an important saftey tip: Never plan to have an SCA demo, attend a major event and have house guests all in the same three day span. This can cause fatigue and even some stress.

Again events of this blog start off on Friday. Our current local SCA group, the Canton of Der Welfengau, has been, well, lets say, less than active of late. Essentially we haven't held any formal meetings in some time. I've been holding rapier practices and my wife had set up a monthly A&S Sunday were folks can come out and work on their projects. A local Scadian wants to get things more active again and we are currently working on the hoop jumping required for that. In order to have a group in the SCA it helps to have active members. One way we are doing this is by having an associated club at the University of Guelph, The University of Guelph Medieval and Rennaisance Society (UGMRS). That way we have a place to meet, a place to hold martial combats, and some new people for our group. In order to attract new members we attended Club Days at the U of G on Thursday and Friday. Baroness Eyrny and Isaac Spinoza took care of Thursday while my wife Asa, Isaac and I covered Friday. We were also helped by some students who had come out to UGMRS last year. Elizabeth, who looks really cute in a medieval dress, came with us. We brought a pile books and artifacts, including my rapier gear. We spent the day chatting with students and showing off our stuff, including the cute medieval toddler. Asa headedout early to pick up groceries and retrieve Matthew from school. Between the two days we got about 70 names signed up. That doesn'tmean they are all going to come out but hopefully some will stick around. We're having our first meeting on Tuesday night at the University Centre, about 7:30 if anyone is interested.

Friday evening saw the arrival of our guest for the weekend, the Baron and Baroness of Skraeling Althing (Ottawa and area) Giovanni and Lucia d'Enzinas. They also brought their daughter and an entourage of one with them but I have, much to my regret, forgotten the good Ladys name. They arrived around 10:30 on Friday evening and we had Elizabeth's room prepared for them with a fold out couch and air matresses. We had also picked up a bunch of food because of some dietary restrictions invoved.

The reason Their Excellencies were crashing with us is that an important SCA eevent was happening on Saturday, the Coronation of our new King and Queen, Nigel and Adrielle. I Had also volunteered to run a rapier tourney that day. The event was being held in Tavistock, which is about an hour from Guelph.

We hoped to leave at 8:00 but as always we were delayed,mostly by the need to sleep. Asa had been working until early in the morning on a scroll that was being presented in Court that day. The scroll was magnificent, a vision in gold and red with motifes from the Celtic Tara broach. It was a combined King's and Queen's Favour for Master Baron Brand. We wanted to be at the site well before First Court so she could deliver the scroll.

We did manage to make it there with lots of time and Asa delivered the scroll right away. We'd gone to the site in garb so not too much set up was required. Asa went off to first court while I gave Elizabeth a run. Matthew took off to the playground and played with friends pretty much the whole day accept for lunch and drink breaks. After the Court was done and Their Majesties duely Crowned Asa took over with Elizabeth, who, after the extensive run she had, was content to stay in her play yard for the most part and Asa even got a nap while E was sleeping.

I organized the fencing tourney. No formal location had been chosen so we picked a likely spot and set up our list. In the tourney each combatant started off with ten tokens (glass beads purchased from a dollar store, 100 for a buck!). They used these tokens a wagers on the outcome of their bouts or even other fencers bouts. Whoever had the most coins at the end would win. Bouts were set up by the fencers and they would also determine the wager and any special conditions. I really do love a tourney that virtually runs itself as it means I get to fence more. We started at 1:30 and ran it until 4:30. People had lots of fun and the final victor was Lord Yoshi from Ben Dunfirth.

One thing that did rather sour the day was an annoucement made by Their Majesties that Dueling was outlawed in a missive that, in my opinion, used some rather poor, even insulting language. The missive lead to considerable confusion among the fencers and some are quite angry with what was annouced. Part of the problem comes from the choice of words used. By banning Dueling there Majesties are outlawing fights to the death which if it occurs can lead to the fencer being "arrested". This is meant to encourage us to roleplay and find ways around the edictand is supposedly all in good fun. The problem is people have spent a lot of time getting us to the accepted status we now enjoy. This was not always so, up to including a percieved attempt at having all fencing banned, back in our days as a Principality. Many fencers feel that the edict is a return to the bad old days and we are being pushed into isolation again. I'm hoping this is not the case. It would also have been nice, as the Kingdom Rapier Marshal, to have been consulted a bit more on this. I had a pretty good idea how people would react. We can certainly still fence at events, but fights to the death must take place out of sight of Their Majesties. There are ways around the edict, but it still feels wrong and a bit exculsionary, giving the fencing a kind of attention it really doesn't need. I've expressed my feelings to the person who is acting as point for TRMs but I suspect not much is going to change. Oddly enough, it doesn't say anything about killing in the rules for rapier combat, it says that good blows are "incapacitating". I know some people are really upset by what's happening and I hope we don't lose people over it.

We left the event at around 5:30. We just didn't have the energy for Feast or 2nd Court. All in all a good day with some great fencing and some beautiful weather. Their Excellencies and company returned around 10:00 pm. We had a great time chatting with them on Friday evening, Saturday evening, and Sunday morning. They were great guests and they seemed to enjoy our hospitality. They will be returning for Kingdom A&S in October. After they left we spent the rest of the day relaxing.

We had been bad Saturday and ordered Chinese food for supper and we had it for lunch. We chilled and watched movies as well. It was also Elizabeth's third birthday. Eve went out and got here some nice presents, including some lovely clothes. She also baked a cake, lemon with white frosting and sprinkles. My mom also had sent a bag of presents so she did quite well. Elizabeth even helped blow out her own candles. It was very nice.

I think that's all for now. Thank you for reading.

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