Time to catch up on SCA stuff. A couple of weeks ago, my mom and I went to Ealdormerian Coronation. Mom needed a break from her newspaper (www.kansastraveler.com) after the Spring Issue was published and I wanted to go see Ed and Gen’s coronation. Since we also have relatives in Toronto and Guelph, it also gave us a chance to meet up with them.
The trip up was good, we did in fact meet with relatives as we stayed in Toronto for two days. The only sour note was the Best Western in Toronto, which was hilariously bad in their service, insisting we could get internet access in our room even though we couldn’t, not being particularly nice to us, and topping it off with the maid service not noticing that the previous tenant in our room had left an adult magazine in it.
The internet access, by the way, was terrible in both of the Canadian hotels we stayed at, I’ve certainly never had that much problem at any hotel in the states. Not sure if that’s a small sample size issue or a commentary on the internet in Canada.
Anyway, the event was held at a campsite in Kingston, Ontario. The weather the week before had been great, so naturally it was a cold wet day for Coronation itself. This meant the fighting was indoors. I would have vastly preferred to have fought outdoors nonetheless, as the air inside the hall was very thick and hot, but I don’t know as it would have mattered. I fought very poorly I thought, winning some bouts but not moving as much as I am used too.
Oh well, no big deal, I still had a great time fighting. Hereward even armored himself up specifically so we could fight, and we had 10 or so bouts, it was great. I also fought in the two tournaments and even though I fought poorer than I hoped, I held my own, well, except when Sir Evander just made an awesome feint that I totally fell for :).
Coronation itself was interesting, especially given the chance to see some interkingdom differences. I did notice that their Queen’s Champion Axe has the same head as ours and found out later that they were created at the same time. Their Champion’s Axe, however, is 5 feet long and the Champion can stand it on the floor. Bah, I say, given how heavy our Axe is and how we have to hold it.
Mom spent the day wandering around taking pictures. She also took a class on calligraphy, something she’d done years ago before either of us had heard of the SCA. She has some good pictures of me fighting, which is nice, since Ashendari never takes any pictures of me (just kidding). She had a great time, something I was kind of concerned about given that I was there seeing all these people that I don’t get to see very often and this is my activity, not hers.
Speaking of which, it was great to see everyone. Ed, Gen, Medb, Hereward, Adrielle, Mahault, Petrie, Gwerydd, Gaerred, Nicolaa, and a whole bunch of others I’m not recalling at this time. I bleed purple and I love Calontir, but I treasure my Ealdormerian friends greatly and I am so glad I’ve had the opportunity to spend time there.
Ed and Gen honored us at feast by asking Mom and I to sit at head table, something I had never done before. Mom has now gone to two events and must now think that she gets to sit at head table every other time :). It was a wonderful honor and I greatly appreciated it. I was struck, however, by what head table implies for royalty. Head table is not an unmixed blessing, as the separation means that you have fewer people to converse with, and for someone who likes to talk as much as I do, that’s something. It’s fascinating to me how something that everyone sees as such a major thing is in fact another sacrifice that the king and queen have to make. Being Champion has showed me time and time again how many little things that sitting royalty, responsible caring sitting royalty, gives up to make their subjects happy. I knew that this happened prior to being Champion but I have been surprised at the scope.
After the feast, which was tasty but was very long, we got a chance to do some singing. I don’t think Mom had ever seen me sing before, and it was nice. Bardic circles, of course, another example of interkingdom differences between Calontir and Ealdormere. I love to sing, but I’m so used to everyone joining in, which is not always the case in Ealdormere.
At feast Gaerred sang Sons of the Dragon, which of course I love and had to join in with. There were a couple of other people standing and helping and afterwards one lady complimented me on my voice. I had my usual uncomfortableness at compliments that was exacerbated when she introduced herself as Mistress Marion of Heatherdale, otherwise known as Heather Dale, an incredible singer with several great CDs and the owner of Amphisbaena Music (www.amphismusic.com). It was very uncomfortable but also very cool that someone like her said that.
At the Bardic Circle, I sang a few times, making sure to sing my version of Cursing the Normans for Edward, who has a Norman persona. I also did probably the best version of The Wanderer I have done thus far, which I was really pleased about.
We both had a great time and I’m contemplating the next time I’ll be able to visit up there. Not sure when that will be, obviously with school starting in August I’ll have to be more responsible and cannot just on a whim head on out to Canada, but I’ll definitely make sure I show up periodically.
Then we had to go home. The drive home was actually very interesting as we ran into snow from London to Lansing. Heavy snow in parts. Also interesting was the border guard with a sense of humor, which doesn’t always happen.