[Sca-cooks] How Was Pennsic?

Elise Fleming alysk at ix.netcom.com
Tue Aug 11 05:39:57 PDT 2009

Shoshanna wrote:

 >We took a walk and found the oven at the corner of Battle Road and
 >Fosseway.  They used fire bricks and mud - they would have preferred 
 >clay but they used what was there.  They had taught a class earlier in 
 >the day but were very kind when we stopped by as they were getting 
 >ready to throw some bread in.  I do not know the name of the 
encampment >but I appreciate them taking the time to show us the oven 
and let us >take pictures.

That was the Three Bears Camp.  Ealdred and Angharad were the main ones 
working on the construction and they are local folk to me 
(Cleftlands/Cleveland, OH).

If it wasn't the mud, it was the dust.  I spent my first day home 
yesterday with coughing spells.  My tent was right on Chandler Road, the 
main road to the parking lot.  Early in the second week, the water 
trucks went by with the sprinklers to settle the dust, but after the 
next bout of rain, no trucks went by and we had three days of dust.  I 
was a bit concerned when I could see a haze of dust above the road while 
walking back to camp.  The top of my canvas tent is gray this year.

Shoshonna didn't exaggerate on the wet.  At one point all but one road 
on the Serengeti was cordoned off and the main parking lot was closed 
for at least a day.  A number of the parking aisles remained taped off 
after the general road was opened.  Cars were stuck up to mid-wheel. 
Somehow folk seem to think that gunning the engine will get them out of 
the mud!  I actually wore my Army poncho and rubber galoshes for only 
the second time in 21 Pennsics.  The mud was incredible.

Continuing the kvetching, the first day's heavy weapon battles ran hours 
late. One of my camp's fencers stormed back into camp and threw down his 
gear.  He virtually spit out the words as he told us that he'd left the 
rapier field in disgust.  The "heavies" ran late and when they left, the 
rapier folk had to clean up the field from their mess before the 
scheduled rapier battle could begin: 2-3 hours behind schedule.  That 
was the worst day for being off-schedule.

And, yes, the archery field's location was not for the overweight and 
out-of-shape.  The Rose Youth Archery Tourney took place on the middle 
Saturday.  The small bus wouldn't go down the final road even though it 
was dry because it hadn't been dry the day before.  I confess to 
grumbling all the way down the hill and wondered if I'd be able to get 
back up it.  (Got a ride in a truck.)

I went to - and moderated - several classes, mostly on SCA recruitment 
and de-mystifying the peerages.  It seemed as if there were more people 
in classes this year.  The first day of classes was more heavily 
attended than I had seen in previous Pennsics.

The C-130s made two runs over the camp, one each week.  The second week 
we were treated to almost half an hour of (Apache?) helicopters 
performing maneuvers above the merchant area and battlefield.  Reliable 
Pennsic staff sources said that they were using the encampment to 
practice estimating numbers of "inhabitants" and other tactical 
maneuvers.  One of the two did a complete loop close to the ground 
somewhere above the Runestone Hill area.  Later, it hovered there for a 
number of minutes while the other helicopter could be seen beyond the 
battlefield.  There are some blurry photos on this web site: 
http://wordfame.org/photos/pennsic38/woods/index_3.html .

My camp had its photo in the final Saturday paper.  We had at least one 
person in camp from all the decades from in utero to the 70s!

While Wolgemut was at Pennsic, I never really saw them.  Teribus was 
much more in evidence in the various market areas.  The play, "As You 
Like It", received fairly good reviews.  What I heard of the rehearsals 
of the Pennsic Choir made me want to re-join the group.  Midnight 
Madness was just that.  Merchants were crowded, although I don't know 
how much money actually changed hands.  I don't usually go out then but 
thought I'd take a look this year.  Got up to the Barn area after about 
20 minutes, couldn't see the lumpy ground with my poor night vision and 
finally gave up.  There was a moon parade again which Three Bears 
organizes.  People in masks and semi-costumes walk through the merchant 
area with various sky symbols.  Rather pretty!

I do wish, however, that the Coopers would build a series of small 
cabins on their property so we could stay in them!

Alys K., still coughing
Elise Fleming
alysk at ix.netcom.com

More information about the Sca-cooks mailing list