BUT I had awesome fun yesterday. Fun I really needed. My first Maryland Renn Fest was in 1987 with the FanTek group. Twenty years ago, it was October, and my life was in system shock. There were many memories attached to that day. It was cold and damp, and Cheryl Evry was wearing a chainmail bikini, so perverts followed her everywhere (to this day, I don't consider chainmail bikinis sexy because I associate it with being cold, damp, heavy, pinching, and makes perverts follow you). My friends Betty and Jim (now Nybor and Elspeth) had a booth there where they sold dragons that fit around your neck, Jim's artwork, and some wooden puzzles Betty's son made. I got my first pentacle (which I was told was handmade, later I found that was not true) and Betty put it on me with a small blessing. This was my first foray into being a Wiccan, which is a religion I would then wander in and out of throughout the years until I just consider myself a "sort of parallel to the Wiccan path."
Every year since then, I go back. I used to go more than once a year, but then my family became poor, and that set a pattern of only once a year. The forest looks the same, and the Fest had added two new areas since then. Over the years, I have known many booth operators. I have seen many of the "behind the scenes" of the tailers where workers live out back, some of the houses from the inside, looking down at all the peasants below, and having some strange encounters where I feel like I am working the fest instead of just attending it.
"Here, would mind ringing this person up/guarding my booth/posing for me while I do this errand/call quarters/put this hat on you/find out what the fighting's about?"
Dragon makers, leather crafters, honey sellers, mask makers, and hair sticks crafters are among some of the merchants I have known or let me in the back to talk to me and get away from the noise.
I used to know many costumers, and the cry of, "NOT PERIOD!" usually countered with, "They may not have invented Spandex, but would have used it if they had!"
I have seen many Kings and Queens, known the politics behind the actors, and I used to have a soap-opera rundown of various cast members sleeping with one another (out of character). I have known actors like Joann, Casey, Mia, Jim, Diane, Laura, Ellen, and a few others I can place without remembering their names. I have known people who have worked as musicians as well.
I used to know the "emergency code word" for the 'Fest. It's the one you cry when being harassed or you want to alert fellow workers of a problem WITHOUT letting the customers know. I don't know if it's the same one, but I'll say the one I used to know started with "f" and ended in "h."
Among the crowd we went with this time, there was me, takayla, Natasha, Kyle, Megan, (friends from Starbucks) and we met up with mysticpaws and cyaneyed. We also saw the Murphys, dreamtigress, Doug Creamer, Kenny Lull and his friend Spencer. I am sure I forgot some of you. We got there at 9:30 planned to leave at 3, but THEN people we knew kept showing up, and then we didn't get out of the gate until 4:30 or so. I was tired on the car trip back, but I had a party to go to...