Monday, August 31, 2015

Reflections on 2nd Weekend

If 1st Weekend of the MN Renaissance Festival was a bit wonky for me, 2nd Weekend tried hard to make up for it.

It began showering me with blessings right away on Friday evening, from the huge dragonfly sunning itself in my ivy to the two bats that circled the interior of my shop before roosting in its rafters to the dear friends who kept me company until nearly midnight as I did last-minute work.
This was MADE for me!

Saturday began with the ever-appreciated coffee. A Fest friend who once caught me spooning granules from a jar of Instant has been hand-delivering a cup to me every morning now for years. And as if that wasn't enough, there was also a still-warm blueberry scone, and later a slab (only word for it) of banana cake and a homebaked loaf of quickbread so dang moist it wilted my princess hair just by opening the bag and inhaling its fruity fragrance. And I must not forget the ground cherries (or as I like to call them: 'sweet little fairy presents wrapped in tissue paper leaves').

Jimmy and his brother, both looking too sharp for words.
And that was just the foodstuffs. Did I mention the handmade woolen beret, complete with monarch butterfly charm? Or the surprise of the aforementioned princess hair? Or how about all the regenerating hugs. Or the visit from some fave customers who made my day by telling me, "Don't take this the wrong way BUT -- visiting you is worth the price of admission because it's like a show." (That comment still makes my socks go up and down.)

And the images.... I saw a woman wearing an octopus on her shoulder. And a tough-looking dad with tattoo sleeves and sunglasses carrying around his little daughter's American Girl doll. I saw familiar faces I haven't seen in ages. I saw my friend Jimmy in his wedding clothes, I saw my friend Jamie propose to his lady -- both gentlemen so dang excited to enter this new phase of their lives that their emotions were infectious. (I'm not used to guys like that. It was heartwarming. And a little heartbreaking, too....) And I saw the most beautiful Blood Moon rise over the Fest grounds just as our own Minnesota Morris Men glided -- haunting and bell-less and beautiful -- over the site, bestowing their blessings.

I reconnected with my favorite fairy ever on Sunday and also met her real-life fairygrandmother, whose wings may have been concealed, but her beauty and sparkles and grace and magick weren't. And I released a monarch at the end of the day and it brought back comedian Scott Novotne and his family! So even my butterflies brought me gifts.... I'm not worthy!

On his daughter Kinsey's hair is the butterfly responsible for my brush with fame.
As always, I learned a lot about myself on this second weekend in a row of stepping out of my comfort zone. Not necessarily good stuff or bad stuff. Just stuff.... A short-change artist took advantage of me earlier in the day, not surprisingly. A dear friend tried to buy me a beer and I somehow negated the gesture (how does one even do that?). And try as I might, I couldn't hide from the probing tendrils of the soul-sucking energy vampires that I swear descend on Fest every year and search out my heart. I think I'm prepared every season, too, and then BOOM.... There's a lesson to be learned there, obviously. Stuff to think about and put into perspective.

Mmmm. Home again. And in Recovery Mode.
By Sunday night I was as friable as a cicada husk, and getting out of garb was a big old effort. During the course of doing so, the resident bandersnatch began its lumbering ascent of the exterior of my shop, scrabbling and heaving itself to my roof before once again attempting to return to the crawlspace in my ceiling. I had hardly the energy to repeat my annual can-you-at-least-wait-until-after-season plea let alone try to frighten it away with the end of my broom....

It's now the day after. And even real food, rattie kisses, Epsom salts in my boiling-hot bath, and a good night's sleep haven't managed to repair me....



According to my Fest friends and neighbors the weekend was $urprisingly $weet, which is so unusual for an early weekend, especially one that coincides with the State Fair. But it wasn't for me, which isn't so unusual. And once again I'm learning things about my art and what it brings (or doesn't bring) to the table. I'm not sure if I can put the lessons into words yet, but it's pointing to being less about my work and more about me.

And I'm not sure yet how I feel about that.

But it's giving me lots to think about....

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