Today was my big outing. I missed Lucy, as she would have loved to go with me, but I know she had fun in Puerto Rico!
I was on the road by 8:30, heading for nearby Tyler, Texas, which is almost an hour’s drive away. The Celtic Fest didn’t start till 10:00, but I wanted to be sure to get there early so I could get a good parking space. This is one of the things I’ve learned over the years. I’d rather arrive early and wait if it means I don’t have to park in another zip code—and in this case, the festival was on the grounds of a downtown museum.
I had actually hoped to arrive an hour early, but even at half an hour early I got a great parking space and sat in my car while I ate my breakfast. I was walking through the gates a few minutes before 10:00, and as I walked past one of the first booths I was greeted by name. The family that runs that booth is in my homeschool group and they vend at other faires I attend also.
Minutes later I was greeted by Elliot and Destynnie, other faire friends. So even though this was a brand-new festival, I already had friends. The first show on the agenda was the bagpiper. He looked very authentic, and even had hand-knit kilt hose, but the effect was a little bit tarnished for me when I heard his very Southern drawl!
Another thing I did in the morning was to watch the fight demonstrations put on by the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism). I felt sorry for the people fighting as they had multiple layers of padding on and it was very hot and humid. The heat index was above 100 degrees for most of the day.
One thing that happened was that while I was watching the fight demos, I occasionally looked up and saw a man who appeared to be looking at me. He was a middle-aged Mexican man. I thought nothing of it. In fact I was quite sure he must be looking at someone else who happened to be seated near me.
Then the demo was over and I realized it was lunchtime. The only regular food concession sold nachos and baked potatoes, neither of which I can have, so I bought a little cone of roasted pecans from one of the vendors and headed out to my car to eat them for lunch.
It was such a relief to turn on the air conditioner in the car and cool off a little bit. Once I was more comfortable, I saw I had almost half an hour before the next show I wanted to see, so I set a timer for 15 minutes and just leaned back and closed my eyes. I didn’t fall asleep, just dozed a little.
When I opened my eyes, I found myself looking right into the eyes of the Mexican man. He was (thankfully) standing on the other side of the fence, but he was very close and he was just standing there staring. I thought when he realized I saw him he would withdraw, but no. He just kept staring at me. It made me very uncomfortable, and it puzzled me too. What kind of guy would stalk a fat middle-aged housewife?
I considered my options. I knew Spencer and his friend were on the way to the very same festival. No man in his right mind would mess with Spencer, so I called him to see where he was and he was still half an hour away. I hated being trapped in my car. I finally decided to head back in to the festival and count on safety in numbers. As I walked through the gate, I did not look to see if the guy was still there (although it took some effort!). I never saw him again and still have no idea what he was after!
Spencer arrived and he and his friend watched some shows with me. There was a lady who sang and did a great job. After arriving home, I discovered that she attended the same boarding school as me in Kenya, but for some reason I don’t know her. I wish I had struck up a conversation with her!
A little later, as I was waiting for Elliot’s show to start, I was surprised by the arrival of my dear friend Sybil. I had told her I would be there as I knew she lives nearby, but I hadn’t heard back from her. We enjoyed Elliot’s show together (magic and juggling). By then I was really starting to wilt in the heat, so we decided to go to Sybil’s house and visit for a bit before I returned for the last forty-five minutes of the festival.
What a relief it was to walk into an air-conditioned house! Sybil brought a chair for me to put my feet up on, and a damp hand towel to drape over my head. It was surprisingly refreshing! Then she made us some nice cold smoothies to sip on as we talked. I felt downright pampered.
All too soon, our time was up and I headed back to the festival. I was hoping to get some herbs from Destynnie, but she had already packed up and left. I was more than compensated when I ran into a couple of other friends whom I was very happy to see. After chatting a few minutes with them, I headed on out as I had another stop to make before going home.
I drove clear to the other side of town and went into World Market to get the “good” chocolate sprinkles. I also used some birthday money to get a bag. I ordered one from Amazon back at the beginning of April, and it never arrived, so I went ahead and got a similar bag from World Market.
I enjoyed the air-conditioned drive home and was talking to Lucy for part of the way (hands free, of course!). Most of the evening I’ve been working on the music for tomorrow. That is enjoyable for me also, so it’s been a pretty good day!