I arrived at Ren Fest at 10:05, just in time to hear the King order the gates of Revel Grove open. I just wandered and window shopped for about forty-five minutes. I got a couple of good pictures of King Henry and the dancers but nothing else much happened until I got to Unicorn Strings. There I bought a new book, Big and Easy Songbook, and spent some time chatting with Gene about Harley and dogs in general. Ashley, the new girl, asked me to teach her to play Amazing Grace, which is the only song I play reasonably well on the psaltery. I did, but she’s having trouble with playing three notes as one. She’ll get it soon, I’m sure. Gene is a great teacher. I hope they don’t mind me hanging out there. It keeps me from getting lonely or bored when I’m there all alone for nine hours a day.
Gene told me about a book he recommends, Pattern Recognition by William Gibson, so I pulled out my Blackberry and ordered it from Amazon. I would have gotten the other one he recommended, but it was too expensive, so I just emailed the name to myself and put a hold on it at the library when I got home tonight.
While I was there, I got out my psaltery and played until my hips started to hurt. Then I sat down on the bench across from them and Princess Anne, King Henry’s new prospective wife, stopped to listen to me! I get really fumblefingered when someone is listening but I managed to make it through Amazing Grace with only a couple of mistakes. She was very gracious and it was fun to be part of the show for just a few minutes. It’s funny, I know these guys and gals are just normal people playing parts, but (maybe it’s my history in that online roleplaying game) but I can’t treat royalty like commoners. I have even met King Henry out of character and know his real name, but to me, at Ren Fest at least, he is the king. It wouldn’t be nearly as much fun if he weren’t.
After a while I packed up my psaltery and walked down to get chicken on a stick for lunch and watched the Rat Man show while I ate. He is so corny and funny and shameless. I wandered toward the Globe Theatre, picking up a couple of pewter trinkets and then chatting about writing with the guy at the chair store. I sat outside of Bullseye and played for a few minutes before making my way to the Globe Theatre. I watched lots of shows today, and my back is hurting from the backless benches, but the shows were all good. I was glad to see that the regular “Other Guy” from Bloody Drama Comedy Show is back. I like him a lot, not as much as Bob, but that’s a given. Shakespeare Skum was in rare form today, something about the heat probably. Then, I hadn’t planned on watching the Washington Revels, but they sort of guilted us into staying after Shakespeare Skum, and I’m glad because they were good.
I have been tempted to cheat on my diet this weekend, but have not done so. I had a few too many almonds today, but nothing else that I shouldn’t have. I was tempted a few times, either by smells or by habits from last year, but I resisted and I am so proud of myself. I really hope to lose weight this fest, rather than gaining like I did last year.
I ended my day at Unicorn Strings, picking up my new book which I hadn’t wanted to carry. Gene tells me that he is designing a new version of his psaltery, using CAD and computers to do the cutting. I don’t understand it all, but I can’t wait to see the results.
Unfortunately, I realized as I was talking to Gene that somewhere after the Globe Theatre and before Unicorn Strings I had managed to lose my purple and green flogger. I went to lost and found, but it wasn’t there. I am losing way too much this year, which is odd because I didn’t lose much of anything last year, just a pin and a pendant. I can’t really replace this thing, because Leather Rose doesn’t make those anymore. It’s not like I NEED a whip, it’s just a prop for my garb, but it was one of my favorite parts of my look. Bummer.
Tomorrow I leave on a corporate jet to visit the Xerox offices with my boss. Ooer! Don’t I feel important. I guess I’d better get some sleep. Only five more days until I can go back to Fest!