In Which I Almost Drink a Bee, and We Sell a Klingon Bat’leth to an Surprising Customer

I hope you had a blessed Resurrection Day. My celebrations were solitary, rather than corporate, as I had agreed to spend the day at the weapons shop again. Lucy and I had an early breakfast before heading back out to the faire.

After our fairly busy day yesterday, today was a huge letdown from a business standpoint. We were ready when the gates opened, but I’m not sure if we saw any patrons for the first two hours. Tim was all set to make funnel cakes and nachos, and pretzels, but he didn’t have customers. Elliot’s first show of the day did not happen because he had no audience at all.
Since there were no customers, I was able to take a quick walk down to the Punch and Judy stage to get a photo of puppeteer DeWitt, whom I had interviewed yesterday. I also had a chance to get a photo of a musician I had interviewed and I got a new interview with a very charming and interesting doll maker.

The method I have used for staying awake the last two days has been to drink Mountain Dew. I’m not proud of it, but it has worked. I poured it into my pewter mug and then sipped on it until the caffeine began to take effect. This afternoon I was on my second Mountain Dew, and had in fact imbibed most of it, when I became engrossed in conversation with another vendor who was visiting our shop. I grabbed my mug to take a sip of Mountain Dew, and found something alive was trying to get past my lips and into my mouth. The little insect legs were scrabbling at my lips. I was pretty sure that, given the sweetness of the drink, the something was a bee. I’m sure you can imagine the alacrity with which I spewed Mountain Dew and bee from my mouth. I was not stung–just a little freaked out. The soda-soaked bee survived the encounter and staggered about on the sawdust floor, no doubt wondering what on earth just happened.

I took a few minutes to go interview our resident mermaid, and I’ve got to tell you, that was fascinating! She offers customers the chance to “birth” a pearl. They pick an oyster from a bowl of water, and then she opens it and extracts the pearl, while giving them a tour of oyster anatomy. Then they get to pick a setting for the pearl and a chain or ribbon to wear it around their necks. I can’t wait to write up this profile. It was so interesting! Did you know there are “mer” Olympics? Mermaid beauty pageants? I didn’t.

Later this afternoon a customer walked into the shop. That was news all by itself, because we hardly had any customers all day. This customer was a Catholic priest who had just conducted the Easter service on the faire grounds. “In the market for a weapon, Father?” I asked. I was joking. “Maybe,” he said. “I’ve got so many already.” A few minutes later he was the proud owner of a Klingon Bat’leth. Before he left the shop he said, “I came in here with a cross and left with a Bat’leth. That’s my kind of religion!” I kind of want to hear one of his sermons now.

Since there were so few patrons, I was free to go to the second joust with Lucy. I have missed getting to go to the jousts and hang out at the forge and all the other stuff I “usually” do. However, doing the interviews has had many compensations. We enjoyed the joust, as we always do, and afterwards Lucy got a short ride on a massive and gorgeous Percheron belonging to the marshal of the joust.

From a business standpoint, the day was very disappointing. We sold a couple of fox tails, a cheap pendant, the bat’leth, and a coyote skin. From a personal standpoint, it was a pretty good day. I enjoy visiting with Tim and the other vendors. I got three more interviews in–all of which fascinated me–and took some photos. I got to see a joust. I’m not complaining.

Parting Shot:


These two adorable little girls belong to the mermaid. They had so much fun playing in the dirt in front of the shop in their beautiful Easter dresses!

Low in the Grave He Lay

Low in the Grave He Lay

Robert Lowry

Low in the grave He lay, Jesus my Savior,
Waiting the coming day, Jesus my Lord!

Up from the grave He arose,
With a mighty triumph o’er His foes,
He arose a Victor from the dark domain,
And He lives forever, with His saints to reign.
He arose! He arose!
Hallelujah! Christ arose!

Vainly they watch His bed, Jesus my Savior;
Vainly they seal the dead, Jesus my Lord!

Death cannot keep its Prey, Jesus my Savior;
He tore the bars away, Jesus my Lord!

Minding the Store

On Monday, my Faire friend Carrie had surgery for breast cancer, and as she is still recovering, I had agreed to work in her booth today. Lucy and her friend Martha came with me, but I rarely saw them. We arrived before the Faire opened but not early enough for me to be able to help Carrie’s husband Tim set up the shop.

Tim’s job was to make lemonade, funnel cake, and pretzels. My job was to sell weapons. It was a long, hot day, but it was very enjoyable. First of all, there were so many fascinating people who came in to browse or who sat down in the shade and talked to me. It wasn’t a huge day for sales, but there was a pretty steady stream of customers buying weapons and Tim was very busy selling lemonade to thirsty patrons. On a day like today, standing in a tiny kitchen with a deep fryer is not a whole lot of fun.

Because the shop is located on the “main drag” where everyone passes sooner or later, I was able to call over some people that I still needed to interview, and got four interviews without leaving the shop! Tomorrow I hope to get more. Today’s interviews were with the bagpiper, another musician, a contortionist, and the Punch & Judy puppeteer. So interesting! I love this job.

The shop is called The Celtic Armoury, and it has a special place in my heart because it was the first shop I ever bought anything from the very first time we went to the Faire 11 years ago. Tim sold me a pewter mug (which I still have) and threw in a leather mug strap for free. Since then our family has bought a wide variety of weapons from him and it’s still one of the most tempting booths at the faire for us! So I am so happy to be able to fill in for Carrie while she is recovering.

Want to know what we sold the most of? Fox tails. Very, very popular.

Tomorrow will be more of the same, except that Carrie is planning to come for a visit and of course, it’s Easter. It should be another interesting day.

Quote of the Day:
One of the customers who came in today was an adorable little girl of about four years old. She campaigned hard to convince her daddy to buy her a fox tail. She used all her feminine wiles to get him to capitulate. Finally he asked her, “Why would you even want a fox tail?” Her enthusiastic answer: “So I could wear it around town and see what people think!” She got the fox tail.

Best-Laid Plans . . .

Well, today didn’t really turn out like I had hoped. Usually on Good Friday, we have a lovely afternoon tea with hot cross buns, and either before or after we have an epic egg-dyeing session. Neither of those things happened today.

Instead, I stayed up very late making hot cross buns and assembling two versions of our favorite breakfast casserole (regular and gluten-free) and then this morning we had our Easter breakfast, except that Mercy had to be at a meeting right as we were sitting down to eat. She still got the food when she came home, but by then the rest of us had scattered.

Walter and Spencer went up to the church to work on a big project that has needed to be done for a long time. It involved tearing down a shed and beginning work on some places that have rotted out due to a leaky roof.

Meanwhile, I was not feeling well due to my short night and allergies and who knows what else, so I had to keep lying down, which meant that zero percent of my sewing got done. I did get some schoolwork done, and I did get to Walmart to stock up on a few things that we need for this weekend, but that’s about it.

Well, I did make supper. Since I won’t be here for supper on Sunday, we had our Easter ham tonight, and I was so happy that Mercy had given up a social activity in order to spend time with the family, but then Spencer called and said he had been asked to stay at work till closing! So once again we were a family member short.
it was such a hit I wanted to do it again, especially since it is by nature gluten free. The problem is that I am now also dairy free, and whipped cream is kind of essential to pavlova. So I did some research and I found several sources that said you can whip the solid portion of coconut milk with a little powdered sugar and vanilla and it will be just as good. I was skeptical, but willing to give it a try.

4-18-14 pavlova

Those who did not know it was not real whipped cream did not guess. It really worked very well, which is great news since I plan on having pavlova for my birthday also!
I’m kind of excited about tomorrow.

Goodbye, Lasagna

Today I didn’t have to tutor so Lucy and Jasper and I went out to run errands this morning. We dropped Lucy off at a thrift store and then continued on to the health food store, where my current dietary restrictions cost me a lot of money. Then we picked up Lucy and went to the fabric store to pick up a few things. That visit also cost more than I had expected. Good thing I decided NOT to get the lace I’ve been wanting today!

I had planned to make lasagna for dinner tonight, and I did make it, with Lucy’s help, but this has become a rather sad task for me. I can’t even eat the gluten free version anymore because of the cheese. So, we made “real” lasagna for those who can eat it, GF lasagna for Lucy, and nothing for me. I had rice cakes and sausage and veggies for dinner. I felt like I deserved something yummy if everyone else was getting lasagna!

Most of the evening was taken up with getting stuff ready for tomorrow. I chickened out of making new GF bread but was able to scrounge just enough to make the GF version of our breakfast casserole for tomorrow. I also made GF and regular hot cross buns that I can just heat up in the morning.

Tomorrow is our Good Friday and Easter celebration rolled into one since I will not be here on Saturday and Sunday. We’ve never done it that way before!

Another Day, Another Class

I’m trying hard to think of something to say about today that isn’t just mind-numbingly boring. We got up and did school and had a class. Nothing exciting happened.

I did get some knitting done while watching a video with Lucy. Yay for me. I made a list of garb I have and garb I want to sew. Yes, I really am that pathetic.

This day actually had some pretty rough edges and I am ready to let it go.

Blood Moon

It was kind of hard getting up this morning–both times. The first time was at 2:00 a.m., when I got up to see the “blood moon” lunar eclipse with Lucy and Jasper. Unlike the last eclipse, we had perfect conditions this time. It was a cold night and crystal clear. The red moon hung like a lamp in the black sky, with Spica nearby and Mars gleaming a little farther away. One edge was still a little lighter than the rest, so we came inside to warm up a little before going back out to see the moon all red.

I’m so glad I made the effort to do this with Jasper (and Lucy). I have a couple of wondrous memories of being called out of bed in the middle of the night at boarding school, of pulling on my dressing gown and walking with bare feet on the cold ground up to the grassy airstrip, where we all lay down on our backs and gazed at the jeweled night sky while our headmaster pointed out the constellations to us. Another time we were roused and sent to the headmaster’s patio, where he had a telescope set up so that we could get a good view of a passing comet. I hope someday Jasper remembers how we went outside in the cold night and gazed at the red moon together. Oh, what loveliness.

Getting up the second time was even harder, but of course I had to because I had a class to prepare for and a ton of other stuff to do. Next week is our last week of classes and I am wondering how we are going to get it all done!

If you click on my “links” tab and go to my “photo” blog, you can find a review of the Queen’s Tea at the faire, if you are interested.