10 We had a good time at the Renaissance Faire.

#2 son was bothered quite a bit by the fact that the archery area was labeled “Primatave Archery.” I tried to convince him that they had done it on purpose to emphasize the primitive nature of the thing, but he was having none of it.

We enjoyed the fire eater. He juggled machetes and things as well.

We also liked the fighting. We missed the jousting, unfortunately, but there were plenty of little battles going on at various stages.

Snappy repartee and clanging were the order of the day, and there were Romans fighting barbarians and then a 10 Renaissance gentleman would jump in, all using their own ideas of Olde Englishe accents, so the whole thing had a nice surreal flair. #2 son said it was supposed to be a panoply of heroes throughout the ages, and he might be right.

We could have stepped in and tried it ourselves, too.

This barbarian would let people bat at each other with foam cudgels and swords.

He kept saying gently to these little boys, “Come on, I need for someone to win.”

The last time I went to a Renaissance Faire with my boys, I bought #2 son a wooden sword. He was way too old for that this time.

10 We admired the metal swords, but did not consider buying them.

We did try to think of some use for the goods being offered by the leatherworker, but we cannot see Daddy in a sporran or even wearing a pouch on his belt, and the rest of us are even less inclined toward barbaric accessories.

My own clothing style could probably best be described as “absent-minded,” but I still can’t imagine throwing a pelt carelessly across my shoulder or tying on a pair of dragon-bedecked gauntlets.

Oh, well. #2 son particularly liked the tanned fur pieces, and of them he particularly liked the masks, but we were unable to come up with any use for them, and moved on. 10

I would have like to have bought something from the spinner, if only to encourage him. He had roving and spindles, mostly, but he did have a bit of handspun yarn. It was very nice, stuff, too, but as is so often the case at Faires, he had about 1.75 ounces each of a whole bunch of different colors and weights. Presumably he doesn’t realize that there isn’t really anything you can make from that kind of quantity. I already have a RenFaire scarf — that is, a very openwork little bit of a neckpiece knitted from a tiny hank of homespun, so I regretfully passed by.

Just as well, really, since I am not supposed to buy anything till #1 son graduates.

Actually, this is the week to begin addressing Christmas cards on the HGP, and I haven’t bought those. I may see this afternoon whether I have the materials to make them.

Oh, back to the Faire. I liked this bear quite a bit. He never got into a bait, but was instead very friendly with the children and attentive to all the shows.

10  There were many people in costume, but this group definitely had the best outfits.

They also worked hard to remain in character throughout.

The music was disappointing.

Not a single madrigal. There were people playing 18th and 19th century folksongs and some 20th century songs as well, not with any great skill. They did all play with great enthusiasm, though, and that counts for something.

There were a couple of men singing “Whiskey in the Jar” with inside jokes, and I liked the insouciant way that one of them carried his instruments bundled together higgledy-piggledy in a leather pouch. 10

The hat of the rightmost gentleman is a knitted hat. He looked pretty silly in it, and I don’t think anyone else would have looked less humorous. I think they were going for a humorous effect, actually, but I liked the way the hat held its rather ambitious shape.

We checked in with fellow booksellers (lots of Harry Potter on the tables) and noted the table of Lao Hmong crafts. They have probably been making them about the same way since the Renaissance, so I have no quarrel with that.

There were some nice crafts that I quite liked. There were gourds cleverly painted like dragons, and fairies made of silk flowers that would make very good  10 Christmas tree ornaments. Of course I respected the rule against taking pictures of such things in order to copy them faithfully later, but I think it is okay to copy them for your own use, as long as you do it from memory.

There were also belly dancers, and a climbing wall, and a camel. My boys are too old for camel rides, so we just admired the camel.

I hope that the Faire went well and becomes an annual event. It was held in the Equine Pavilion across the street from the experimental cotton field, which is very close to home. We have always previously had to drive a long way to attend Renaissance Faires, but this one was just a little afternoon outing. 10

We came home, having done our grocery shopping, and practiced our pretzel-dipping skills. We’re doing pretty well at it. I really don’t have the hang of the dipping tool, but can do it by hand with a good flick of the wrist.

These are Hallowe’en wreaths, which may be a silly concept, but it is better than going ahead and making Christmas ones, and I am beginning my Christmas wreath-making parties next week, so I clearly need a bit of practice.

#2 son prefers his completely coated with chocolate, which necessitates getting your hands pretty well completely covered in chocolate too. I won’t do that at parties, but we’ll do it for our own home use.

I also got Ivy sewn up and began the sleeve bands. I should have some pictures of Ivy for you tomorrow.

And then we lolled around eating nachos and watching British comedies.

10  I am now supposed to go play guitar for the little children in Sunday School.

I tried to persuade #1 son to come and play for me, but he refused. The rotten kid. I have brought up children who feel completely free to refuse requests, and that is clearly a good thing, but it also means that I have to play guitar in public, when I haven’t played even in private in a decade or more.

The children are studying about David, who played before Saul on his lyre. I am the closest thing they can find to David. I intend to sing a song about David.

I suppose I had better get dressed first.