Sunday, August 21, 2016

Pennsic Recap

I should probably start with the fact Abigail was "dognapped" a week before Pennsic.  My Dad came over, checked out the tires on my trailer, confirmed I was good to go, and took the dog with him.  :-)   Abigail apparently greatly enjoyed her near month away on vacation.  She got to go to the beach with her very best friend Dusty (Mom's dog), my nephews, and my parents.  ...Although, after a week, she began to paw at the truck and even convinced Mom's dog to hop in with her as an indication they were tried of the beach....

Anyway, Pennsic!    I got there around 1 pm or so on the 29th.  I immediately saw one of my fellow N24-ers (Pennsic is laid out in a series of blocks.  Each block has a letter and a number.  Each block can have multiple encampments on it.  In my case we have 2 1/2 - two actual land agents but three households).  He said he wasn't stalking me but he wanted to see if I had arrived yet.  Given the giant blue house I was pulling, I'm pretty easy to spot.  :-)

We got all the paperwork done in about five minutes and I went up to the space, parked, put out the shepherd's hooks, lanterns, and the shower tent and then - done.  Honestly, most of peace week I slept.  I really needed to catch up on sleep after working 10 hour shifts, sewing the moment I got home until 11 at night, and then getting back up at 5:30 to start over.  So peace week was more sleep than it was anything else.

I did go out and take pictures, play Pokemon, and at least look at the shopping but that was about it.  I also wore garb every day like you are supposed to.  This is a HUGE gripe with me and Pennsic over the past couple of years - I saw way too many people just hanging out in their gym shorts, wearing a vintage 1960's dress, or a sundress that I honestly would wear to Church.  I even saw one woman wearing biker shorts and a flannel top - how on Earth is that even an outfit let alone garb?  Pennsic looked more like People of Walmart than it did an SCA event at some points.  It was horrible, it was distracting, and it was disgusting.  Sorry guys, I know I'm not the only one who has zero desire to see how far over your waistband your naked stomach can go.   Women?  Bras.  If you aren't wearing a self supporting dress, wear a bra.  Wrapping a scarf around you is not supportive and it looks painful.  Wearing your beach coverup is not garb either.

I'm thinking of starting some sort of fashion police for Pennsic next year.  If you are not in garb, cannot provide evidence that you just got to Pennsic in the past two hours (I'm okay if you are just hanging out at the food court after going through troll. I'm not okay if you are going to classes and not in garb), you will be forcibly returned to your camp until you put on something that is garb.  If you are forced to return three times, you get kicked out of Pennsic.  Sorry, but Pennsic has rules and wearing garb is one of them.  Yeah, I need to contact the mayor about this before I do anything too rash but this total and lack of respect for what the event is needs to stop - now.


Anyway, by Friday of peace week, I had gotten little done and all the rest of my camp showed up.  From there on in, it got crazy, of course.   (I probably should add that during Peace Week, the group that camp's next to me has another household that camps with them.  The other household tried, once again, to take over my space despite both my and the other land agents agreement.   The other household is one we ALL have issues with every single year.  This year, one of the individuals kept going off site and would knock into my shepherd's hooks with his car almost every single time.   There were other issues as well but, considering we never see that one household even attempt garb -the things you wore to Woodstock aren't garb-and only saw them down in the merchant area once during all of Pennsic, we aren't sure why they even bother to come.)

Okay, back to War Week.

Between the Disney Party, classes, and general frivolity of war week, it was crazy.   Here are some of the pictures:

My A&S contribution. I didn't pre-register and a lot of people showed up so I ended up with just a bench and a chair - which was fine! My dress is 100% handsewn wool that I dyed using indigo dye. The embroidery around the neckline is out of silk cord. The chemise is also 100% handsewn. It's all done in the style of the early 16th Century Venetian dress. The outfit is very comfortable as I wore it a couple of days later. The wool is extremely lightweight.


Pennsic at night.

DSC01282 came and had a booth at Pennsic. I LOVED being able to see the fibers in person and handle them. I now know exactly what I need to order from them.


GLOW STICK WAR!!!!!!!!!!! Yes, it's blurry, but it's glow sticks being thrown at night. :-)


Although this photo was taken during Peace Week, it needs to be shared as well. The weather won this Pennsic - no one denies that. The problem was the humidity. The temperature rarely got out of the 80's but the humidity made the "real feel" around 105F every day. This caused a lot of people to go to the hospital. Unfortunately, the more advanced we get technology wise, the stupider we get regarding our own environment. If you go from your air conditioned car, to your air conditioned office, back to your air conditioned home later in the day, your body will have huge issues adjusting to Pennsic. Your body needs to acclimate to the weather. This means spending time actually outdoors. Drive around without the a/c on. If you spend at least an hour each day for a couple of weeks before Pennsic outside without the a/c, you'll probably do a lot better overall.

Also, at Pennsic, wear loose, long sleeved but lightweight clothing. A hankyweight linen tunic/chemise/smock is a dream in the heat. Not only does it give a barrier between you and the sun (something a lot of people needed!), but it also helps to get the sweat away from you as well. You don't want anything fitted on your arms, just a nice, loose sleeve.

The third thing is to drink water. Not Gatorade. Not soda. Not Pennsic crack. You want a lot of water to help function in the heat.

As for the actual rain and thunderstorms - first thing, look at where you want to pitch your tent. Is there a gully nearby? Is the land sloped down? Ask people who have camped there before where the problem spots are. My group had to stop a family from camping a)in our space but more importantly b) right at the mouth of a huge gully. A couple of days later, a large amount of debris appeared after a rainstorm right where the family wanted to camp. We had to explain to them that the gully turns into a river and exits right where they wanted to pitch a tent. They ended up camping across the street on a plateau - way better idea.

Pallets make excellent raised flooring if you are using a tent. Get about four, throw down a couple of boards on top of them, and instant raised floor! This will help with a lot of flooding issues. Also, you can tent up your tarp to help prevent flooding as well but I always tripped over the tarp getting into my tent when I had one. Therefore, the pallets were an excellent upgrade.

Get a rubbermaid container to put an extra set of garb, muggle clothing, and undies in. This way, if you do get flooded, you will still have dry clothing.

Pennsic is a camping trip but it's also an SCA event - people need to be prepared for both. More pictures here.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Sling for a little boy

One of my co-workers was telling me today about how her five year old boy fell and broke his arm in two places. Eck! Poor baby got out of surgery around 3 am, woke up around noon, and was asking for his Mom (her sister was with him), so she left work to go see him. He's more upset that he might not be able to play sports than he is about the break itself.

My co-worker told us (myself and a few other co-workers) that her son loves Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles or anything with Ninjas. So, I decided to make him a simple sling for his arm. It's just a 12" square with a slight curve for the elbow. It's a very simple pattern that, I hope, will fit him. If not, I have a lot of fabric left over. The strap is adjustable with the buckle towards the front.