Final Adventures at the Ren Fest: Sixth Weekend

My last three day weekend!

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: This year has been weird to boot. The weather felt like it was the first weekend, not the sixth. We always do better sales when it’s cooler, so that’s a disappointment. It did get a bit chilly on Monday, but it also rained, which meant the mud gates were back open.

Knight on a stick horse followed by a squire with coconuts

When it gets that muddy, it’s too dangerous for the horses to joust. That means the knights do their routine with stick horses (followed by someone banging two halves of a coconut together, of course). I had to see it, but it would cost a great sacrifice. I slipped and fell in the mud… Fortunately, I wasn’t really hurt; just my pride and the utter discomfort of spending the rest of the day worried about touching anything. Honestly, the rain-joust was still worth it.

Some other debacles from the weekend:

  • Somebody came up to my spinning demo and said “That’s dope, sweetheart.” Like, I appreciate the compliment, but I hate pet names from strangers like none other…
  • A couple walked by and asked if their partner wanted to check out the booth. “No,” they said. “They won’t have the color I want.” Maybe we did, but they’ll never know!
  • “So many women have put so many hours into this,” a guest watching my demo told me, which is problematic on a couple of levels. This was directed at me less than to me, like they were telling me new information. It’s not, of course, because I have put so many hours into this. It also implies that men have never or don’t currently spin, and all of this is passive misogyny I had no time for.
  • Speaking of misogyny, another passerby felt the need to comment that I “must have a very happy husband at home.” Yes, why would anyone spin other than to make a man happy?
  • “This is tedious,” yet another guest watching the spinning demo told me. I was starting to explain that I actually get a lot of joy out of spinning, and this guest told me I was wrong: “I do this. It’s tedious.” Maybe don’t do it, then?
  • Someone came into the booth on Monday, when it was cold and rainy, asking after fingerless mitts. Marci directed her to the three pairs that were left, and this person sulked: “All the cute, warm things are sold out.” Cute is in the eye of the beholder, I guess.
  • And the worst, my biggest COVID freakout this whole faire: Someone came into the booth CONTINUALLY COUGHING INTO THEIR HANDS, picked out yarn, and PROCEEDED TO HAND ME SAID YARN. We’re a year and a half into this pandemic. Wear a mask and/or cough into your elbow, folks…

Just because there was so much frustration, I decided the good stuff needed its own list!

  • A little kid came by dressed as a knight. “You look ferocious!” I told them. “No!” was the response. “I promise I’m nice.”
  • Another kid corrected their adult, who said I was knitting, to tell them I was spinning yarn. “You’re right!” I told them. “I’m learning how to crochet, but my tension’s not very good,” they said. This was a very old soul in a very young body, let me tell you.
  • A couple of friends were walking by the booth. They were just about past it, with me paying no mine until one exclaimed “WE ARE INTERESTED,” and doubled back into the booth. They were looking for warm things for a trip to Antarctica, which is pretty cool!
  • A couple of my friends came by to say hi this weekend! One told me they asked the yarn shop down the hill about me, and they directed them to our booth “like they have had to do that more than a few times.” That made me smile. I appreciate everyone who’s come out, by the way!

I actually only have one more day out at Faire. It will be bittersweet, for sure!

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