[Periodencampments] Theater or Research?

Wendy Freeman/Otte wyllowmacm at netscape.net
Tue May 8 05:32:41 PDT 2001

We banked a fire at Lilies War one year - kept buried coals "alive" for the morning fire the entire week.
  There is some danger to this: We lined our pit with sand and rocks to avoid root fires, made *sure* it was cool and there were no remaining coals before filling it in, and carefully replaced the turf we had removed.  The next year, we couldn't identify where we had dug the pit, so we must have done a decent job restoring the site.
It was fun!
--Lady Wyllow MacMuireadhaigh

periodencampments at ansteorra.org wrote:
> Wendy F. Otte writes:
> >Instead of trying to make the entire camping experience "real", I
> >set up historical micro-sites, focussing on using the authentic
> >tools and methods for whatever projects I have planned for the
> >event, and cheat on the areas that will only exhaust me for no good
> >reason.
> >For example, why spend hours slaving over a fire to cook a single
> >bowl of oatmeal, especially since I have usually cleaned my
> >breakfast dishes before most people have started to even stir?  But
> >I will chop the wood and build a fire to try out a new breakfast
> >dish - then force it on as many early-risers as possible.
> >
> >Have others reached the same point of compromise?  Does anyone know
> >of a (cheap) source of porters, so I could camp in style?
> An alternative approach is to try to use simple, low work period
> solutions for the unimportant things.
> Breakfast is an obvious example. Fruit, bread, sausage, dinner
> leftovers and many other things are  period foods that you can have
> for breakfast with less work than your oatmeal.
> If you find a lantern inconvenient, one solution is an OOP
> flashlight. Another is to see if you can find things in your tourney
> chest at night by touch. Organizing with cloth bags inside the chest
> makes it easier.
> Part of the fun, for me, of trying to avoid OOP solutions is that it
> forces you to think about whether there were easy ways that things
> could have been done in period--instead of starting with a hard way,
> concluding that you don't have the time and effort to do it with
> period technology, and substituting modern technology instead.
> To be fair, we still have a few compromises. Our trash goes into a
> plastic trash bag concealed inside a cloth bag. We light the fire
> with matches, not flint and steel.
> But rejecting that last compromise would give us an incentive not
> only to learn more about period ways of starting fires but also to
> learn more about banking fires for the night so that the coals would
> still be available in the morning--which would be interesting.
> --
> David/Cariadoc
> http://www.daviddfriedman.com/
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--Wendy F. Otte

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