Well! Where to start?
Let’s see. Friday we headed down to San Diego to get set up for Ren Faire. The drive itself was okay. I’m still having a hard time with drives. It makes me hurt. Plus, it was hot. Very hot. And humid. Now, don’t tell me 30%+ humidity isn’t humid because you live somewhere it’s always 50+ humidity-wise. When you live in a normally dry climate, humidity in the double digits is ALWAYS a shock to the system, especially when the actual temp is like a dodgeball game between high double and triple digits. We’ll add to that equation a lot of dust and leaves and pollen and tons of manual labor in a largely breezeless environment. That should put you in the rough neighborhood of where we were. It was not pretty.
While I mostly did little more than “supervise” setup (poor King Arthur and our guild guys had the all the heavy lifting), I did have small jobs to keep me busy in between chats with friends. There’s really only so much I can physically do at this point. I felt rather useless. I was the albatross around their necks. I don’t like not being able to help more. But them’s the cards I be dealt.
Once we got to the motel, I showered off, noting the changing level of brown in the water as it gradually stripped the dirt away. It’s amazing how dirty you get when loose soil and leaf detritus mingle with sweat. After the shower, I settled into bed and actually fell asleep without any trouble. That may have been the first time in many months it’s happened. I still dreamt of pain, but I wasn’t waking up every 30 minutes! Hallelujah! We take our victories where we find them.
Saturday was a beast. A BEAST, I tell you. I barely made it through 40 minutes of gate duty and that was with shade. Only it wasn’t just the heat getting to me. My pain level was threatening to derail the entire day. Common sense dictated I head back to the guild, take my meds, and sit the hell down. Which I did. Gladly. Attendance was fairly light due to the insane temps. 104° with humidity over 30% again. In. the. shade. Oh joy! Because of the light attendance, faire became more of a kind of gig just for ourselves. I missed the usual flow of kids and families, but it was fun to be able to take in a show and talk with friends from other guilds. (Best part of the day was getting a wave from the stage from my new little toddler friend, Zoe. She’d been super shy earlier and would only smile after I started playing peek-a-boo with her. Her mom and dad are Old English folk dancers and are new to this faire. Mom had her in a sling during one of the performances. Very cute!) However, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t happy and relieved to be back at the motel. Ahhh, air conditioning (kind of — the a/c was being somewhat cranky at first)! Shower! Food! Bed! And then I couldn’t sleep. I may have had a full hour’s sleep at some point.
I had planned garb pretty well for the weekend. No long sleeves. No leather. Saturday’s garb was double skirt, blouse, sea vest, boots. Elizabethan enough to be period appropriate, so maybe “bethan” as opposed to ELIZAbethan. Sunday? I was barely “bethan” adjacent. Single skirt. Blouse. Boots. No bodice. No sea vest. I felt for everyone who had to wear full garb. Like our queen and her court. And the knights who were in battle gear (including armor). Saturday, 15 people (all guests, I believe) were treated for heat-related symptoms, three of which were transported to the hospital. Don’t know the count for Sunday, but my guess is there were fewer incidents as the medic had time to be a-wandering and a-visiting (see below).
Sunday (yesterday) was just as hot and just as humid and just as sparsely attended. Again, the nice thing with light attendance is the opportunity to hang out with other people and get to know each other. We have a new guild member. She was our waitress at dinner a month or two ago and we invited her to come play…and she did! She’s a great addition to the guild. We also have two prospective members who jumped right into our literacy gig and played alongside us with a nice family who stopped by. Then there were my favorite musicians at faire. I had a chance to get to know them better and I don’t remember the last time I laughed that much while feeling so awful. They’re a delightful couple who are just loads of fun and talent. I even got serenaded! As well, I got to spend time with our faire neighbors, listened to wonderful stories, heard a couple of disgusting tales from a medic, drank the equivalent of a lake of water and gatorade, and survived it all. Teardown went quickly and the drive home was uneventful. Thank God! Shower at home was one for the record books. Extra special plus was Fletch crawling up into my lap when I finally got to sit down. It was sweet. Fell asleep early, but I woke up wracked with pain (isn’t that a funny saying? I mean, the definition of wrack is to cause extreme mental or physical pain and yet we say “wracked with pain.” This, it would seem, means I’m in extreme pain with pain. Hmmm.). King Arthur, too.
Today’s been a challenge. Celia has conjunctivitis and went to the vet to be treated. On the way home, she pooped everywhere. She was covered with shit. KA called and had me prep the shower. Who was elected to brave giving the sea witch a shower? Me. And you know what? Celia was an absolute rockstar throughout! When we were done and it was time to dry her off, I wrapped her in a towel, held her close, and she just melted in my arms. Rarely does she allow one to hold her so close. I’m sure she was relieved it was over. Now she’s clean, dry, well-fed, on the road to recovery from conjunctivitis, and snuggly.
Our recovery day didn’t start out easy, but we’re now all mostly settled in for nothing but rest. I say mostly because there is laundry. I figured I was already wound tighter than an eight day clock, in pain, etc., so I may as well just get it done. My hope is to finish the second load and leave the rest for tomorrow, provided I can move then. Until then, I’m sitting still as much as possible, slathering myself with Benadryl cream because of the heat rash on my legs, drinking lots of fluids, and watching TV and movies.
Oh yeah. One last thing: I took my camera out of the bag Saturday and never took a single photo. Sunday? The bag remained closed. Ummm hmmm. It was THAT HOT.