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7 January, 2010

by The Wandering Wastrel

fairOne day a few years back I dressed up in a long black velvet  cloak, brown peasant pants, boots and a medieval white frock shirt and I went up to the California Celtic festival.

The stalls were amazing – there were heaps of representations of Celtic life and I got talking to the blacksmith who was selling heaps of knives and weapons. He was starting to do a bit of work on copper so I was able to share some secrets with him for a great time of trade secret swapping mania.
I really liked this big battle axe he had made and he offered to reduce it to 75 $ mates rates deal  – so I bought it and have already hacked a huge chunk off of a bed at my house and cut my fingers on it.

The people in costumes at the fair did not seem to accurately represent the cross section of mediaeval life .

There were about 80 % high born Nobles and Ladies 20 % warriors and archers, and one peasant.

So I got talking to this dude who was fully dressed up in his peasant clothes complete with twisted oak staff… he was kind of terrified – as there were so many oppressive elements all around him. He sought refuge in our conversations and I told him that I was actually a Wizard and He was actually a Druid and he was secretly running the whole show .
I told him that we were going to make a huge Wicker man and fill it with the other attendees and then torch it.
Once it was all burnt down – the ashes would be spread over the crops to ensure a bountiful harvest.

I had a great time sneaking off and watching him from afar hidden in my black cloak in the shadows .
I saw him round a corner and come face to face with this big kid who was fully dressed up as a brutish medieval Guardsman with chain mail, sword, tabard,  massive gauntlets and all.
I had seen the guardsman swaggering around the fair with his hand always on his sword like he was going to draw it. He looked very menacing.(  I was not scared of anyone there of course – the entire village was terrified of me and my dark powers.)
But from afar  I saw the guards man come around the corner face to face with the peasant. There was one frozen second where they stared at each other.
One looking dangerous, one looking terrified before the peasant ducked his head and hastily stumbled off.

I was amazed by the amount of people who are so into the medieval life.
A lot of these people made a living from selling their crafts.
One guy was selling little cross bows. So I got one.
When we got home I  modified it to be able to shoot sharp pencils and marbles to devastating effect.