Corn On The Cob!
Well, the war started at 5:15pm Thursday the 9th of June for me and mine. We left for Valens and Susanna’s then. There were quite a few calls to inform us that Tony was history. We were ready for it either way. I spent all day Fri. putting up signs and hauling loads of wood and other ‘stuff’ to site. My lady-wife Fionna and my daughter Alex helped in this. So my first day of Lilies was just plain hard work.
On Sat. Susanna let me set up camp early for my labors. I had the second tent on site up. We chose our usual location on the crest of the hill just up from the beach and ‘Party Pit’ This year I set up my most extravagant camp yet. We had a bedroom tent with king size bed. (The new bed worked out great, more on this later.) A ‘closet’ tent where we kept all our gear and a eating/cooking fly. In the cooking fly we had a full size CHARBROIL grill with all the fun toys that you can get for one. We also got one for the picnic tables that come with the site. (Some didn’t get used this year. They (the Park) musta listened when I told them we needed more last year.) Fionna modified my big round tent so that the walls could be tied up. She sewed large button holes in the floor so that it would stay in place with just a few diesel valves to hold it down. Spent most of the day setting up camp and shouting, "Hey Tony! We won! We Won! Nyah! Nyah!". That night we had steak and corn on the cob for supper.
I was in charge of the official fire for Lilies. I dug a great fire pit. Was about 7’ across and 18" deep. We had almost a cord of hard wood (walnut) to burn. On Saturday night Marcus (my official fire starter.) set the first fire. Mostly Lilies was a great event. But it was marred by some disturbing things. Sat. Night saw the first. Valens, Marcus and I supplied 7.5 cases of beer to the folk at the circle. Almost everyone of the ‘moochers’ said they’d get beer later in the week. Only one fellow did. Fewer folk are living up to their word if its not convenient. (I blame Clinton.)
Sunday was a day of shameless lounging. After a breakfast of pancakes and sausage I laid around in bed all day. I did get up twice to swim awhile. A few more folk came in and set up near us. Was a very relaxing day. (I did have to buy more beer to replenish the lost supplies from the moochers.) Ly. Bronwyn made a whole salmon . For supper we also ate a modest meal of seasoned ground beef , Corn on the cob, baked potatoes, and hot dogs.
The fire pit was a little more subdued that night as the moochers were without lubricant. Still was many a song sang and story told.
After another fine breakfast Monday. Morn (planned the night before - in Grimfells we never leave one meal until we have planned the next.) I wandered the camp see everyone. I visited the merchants and bought a gift of 3 yards of silk for the lady who did my Pel scroll. Was very windy on Mon. but cool. Supper was a little exciting as I came up with a new catfish recipe. I took a big bowl of catfish chunks (was on sell at the big V for $.40/LB) poured a bottle of lemon juice over them, about .25 cup of olive oil and lots of lemon pepper (the universal spice!) were added too. I then cooked them in a basket over the charcoal. They were magnificent! Very, Very good. We also had corn on the cob, and beef fajitas. Another relaxing day.
That night an Inn was run by a Ansteorran household. They had soup, beer, bread, beer, mead, beer, wine and beer. It was all free; all that they asked was that you either give them a token or entertain. As I’m not a bard I made a metal half gauntlet and gave it to them. Was a very good time. Lots of singing and story telling and dancing. Was a very good time indeed!
The next morning, Tues., after a breakfast of eggs with collard greens, pancakes, sausage and bacon , I shot a lot of archery. His Grace Lorell (Chubs) did a great job of having some very fun shoots. The pop-n-jay was very fun. I even got one good hit on the critter. Archery was more fun than it had been in a while.
Now here I must tell of my bedroom at camp. I built a platform bed out of 2x4s and plywood. It breaks down to a small bundle of 2x4 that fit under the van seats and a stack of 5/8th inch plywood that fits in the bottom of my trailer. The mattress is a multipart futon of my own design. It has a hardwood headboard that keeps all the pillows on the bed. (I use 5 feather, Fionna uses 3 foam.) This bed in a 13' tall tent with the walls up was very, very comfortable. Almost too comfortable. We never could clean the bedroom tent because there was always someone taking a nap or relaxing there. One night I came back to camp to find 9 folks being served dinner there. Well with this pit of sloth available I spent a lot of my time just laying there enjoying the visitors.
Ld. Duncan won the warlord bridge battle that day. So not all Grimfellers were sleeping. The Saxons beat the Viking on the limited field battle. I marshaled. I also helped authorize over 40 folks that morn/afternoon. Later Tuesday afternoon, after the swimming I lounged in my bed with 5-6 good friends till it was time to make supper. We had Honey mustard charbroiled chicken and normal BBQ chicken, Corn on the cob, salad, and baked potatoes.
That night we drank and sang, and told stories late. We were in the swing of the war. I was almost too much in the swing of things. I imbibed a little much of the barley bean and was very well gone. On Wednesday Swimming and sleeping took most of the day. We went all out for supper that night. Ly. Bronwen made leg of lamb and mint sauce. Fionna made a large green bean casserole, Ly. Christiaen made baked beans, we had salad, corn on the cob, ground beef, and baked potatoes. We fed everyone who came by.
I went to bed early that night. *sigh*
After our regular large breakfast on Thursday I was ready to fight a little. I went and joined the chivalric challenges. I fought in my usual brutal way but the ladies of the rose seem to like it. (they screamed real good when I would ceremoniously dis-member the herald after every fight.:) Though they did seem to like my strip tease with my skirt in the middle of battle too.) After that came the war point, a bridge battle. We Vikings had to win, a tie was a loss. The longest weapon was a 6’ spear and the only missile weapons was javelins. I took 12 javelins and my sword out to play. As long as my javelins lasted the Viking held the screaming hoards of Saxons away. As the javelins gave out they overwhelmed us on both bridge and secret ford. I was so hot I could not fight in the navel battle. I did spend 20 minutes under the shower to cool off. Every war should have showers on the battle field. It made a great difference. Oh yeah, the Saxons won the naval battle too.
We cooked a passel of ‘Brauts that night expecting to need drunk food latter. For the fire pit Syr Valens and the Grimfellers had procured a keg of beer. As the last of the keg went down and the beer munchies hit, Her grace Braden talked us into going to O’Mallys Alley. The best food merchant on site. (He makes great drunk food.) I ate 3-4 pork chop sandwiches and 4-5 chicken thighs. Then the Outlands stole me for another couple of hours of singing. Was a very fun night!
Friday Morning saw me unable to eat. I was crippled with a hangover. The only thing I did all day besides sleep was be part of a Calontir history class. And that hurt. Fionna and Master Criag also were in great pain having consumed a liter of amerreta the night before. Fionna spent most of the day sleeping with me in bed. It was HOT. I just had enough energy to help launch and row Hal’s boat. It was great! Though I now think that the Viking were a race of midgets. A normal size person like me barely fits into the boat. Well done Hal. His majesty christen the boat the Elizabeth with a mug of beer. Calontir has a navy!
That night the Lilies fireworks were fired off. I realy liked watching Valens and Shadon dance around on fire when a ground burst went off right beside them. The Flaming Calon Cross with 144 flares was great as the finale. Was very well received. The singing, drumming, dancing and story telling that night was very energetic.
On Saturday we cooked pretty light. Only eggs, sausage and pancakes. I was one of the archery champions for the Normans. The Normans lost both champions battles very fast. *Sigh* (In a Anglo-Saxon kingdom the Norman’s are the designated losers.)
The fortress battle was the last battle of the war. We Normans had a chance as we got the fort. The Saxon archers had to fire from 25’ away from the wall (this simulates firing up hill at a castle wall.) and the attackers had to swim a moat on their knees. (We did leave a large pile of PVC pipe and 4x4s with duct tape at the Saxon resurrection point. We figured they would realize they needed some siege equipment and build it. They didn’t.) The Brave Saxons bulled into the wall against a withering fire of arrows and javelins again and again. One group from the Confederacy of Shires in the MK made at least 4 assaults making over the wall twice. But as the temp was 99 degrees and the humidity was hovering around 90% most folk opted for the water volley ball game soon. In fact that is where I was when the field resurrection battle was fought. In the lake.
That night we went out for Pizza. At court Master Craig (dead man) Duggan was made a court barron. As we, Craig and myself, are from the deep south of Calontir we are looking for white Panama hats and black string ties so that we can style our selves as "colonels" instead of court barons. :) The reveling was mostly at the sumo wrestling that night. Though there was a late night ‘Neked’ swim that was fun also.
On Sunday, most folk broke camp to go home. I sent Fionna and my Daughter Alex to town to get a good nights sleep. That night around the last fire of the war I saw something that scared me almost as much as Tony. One of the merchants on site was an Inn. It was a food place that was all mundane. Propane stoves, plastic tents, folding chairs, plastic forks. I stayed away. Well, Sunday night the owner came down to drink and talk with us ‘participates’ . This was the first time in the war he had left his shop. He got drunk and as the romans say ‘in wine is truth’. I found out what he as a merchant wanted out of the war, Cash. He made speeches about how he would not take a vacation unless it made money and how stupid anyone was who did so. He had plans for moving the merchants, battle field, archery field and camping so that everyone was forced to go through the merchants to go anywhere. He wanted to limit the number of time folks could leave camp so that they would be forced to buy ice from the merchants. (I buy mine at Clydes.) At one point when Countess Susanna pointed out that this was a war for the ‘participants’ not for the merchants. he jumped up, threw his beer into the fire and screamed at her that she didn’t understand what a cash cow Lilies could be if the merchants could just control access. I stood up to discuss this with him in my own style but Valens told me to go to bed.. I did. The last fire at Lilies was ruined.
On the last Monday I was feeling a little put out by the last fire. But it was time to clean up. I had spent one of my precious vacation days to help Susanna clean up. It was a mistake. When I first joined we were told to always leave the site cleaner than when we found it. Many of the society folk have forgotten this idea. Most folk had made an effort to pick up. Some even did great jobs, Istivans goat camp was spotless and well as the Outland camp. But two large groups of campers were pigs. Brother Cristawfulis (sp?) and his royal kitchen was a festering sore. Bottle caps, bottles, cans, cigarette butts, rotten meat and bones, plastic jugs, bags of ashes and putrid meat. We had to clean all of this up for the scum. As bad as his camp was the camp in mosquito flats (think it was the folk from Saint Jo) left a worst mess. They even left a burning fire. I had to fill in 2 fire pits and one beer pit. We had to dig through the under brush to get all the trash they had just thrown into the woods. This is not how we, the Society, are supposed to treat our sites. The merchant area was a mess, as usual, but that’s a given. Can’t expect them to make money off of us and clean up after them selves too. The clean up really disheartened me.
All in all was a great war. I’m already planing on a better camp for next year. There was so much I didn’t mention that happened that made it great. So many stories to tell.
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