Hear the words long prophesied. Well, not that long. And really more suggested. Not even promised, really. Anyway.
The 13th season of the Carolina Renaissance Festival came to a close this weekend. And I've got mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, I'll miss being able to be more "me" than I get to in the "real world". I've always felt more comfortable in garb with a sword on my hip than I ever have in any modern clothing. And Captain Julien Grey is a sort of idealized version of who I wish I was at times. He was born of noble blood, though he was not nobility himself. He started in the militias early on and distinguished himself. Eventually, he got picked to be in the Royal Guard, defending the royal family. And there, he continued to distinguish himself. He became Captain of the Royal Guard at 21, very young by anyone's standards, was knighted and took back his ancestral estates. In the following years, he was granted lands, respect and eventually a barony and lorship all his own. A self-made man. The American dream in Renaissance England, if you will. Now, I'm working on the self-made bit, but as a merchant, not a soldier. But on the other hand, Chris, Doug, Lani, and I nearly broke ourselves financing the festival this year. Which was a result of several things, some our fault, some not. And it didn't help that we were transporting 9 teenagers to and from the festival each weekend, on top of the four of us. And now we have our weekends back. Which is nice. But I'll still miss it.
A lot of greatness went down this weekend.
The Royal Guard finally got the recognition it deserves. Lolly, who played our amazing Queen Eleanor, is the Queen in Minnesota as well. Up there, she has her Royal Guard. And they're an amazing bunch. The dress in the Beefeater uniforms as designed by Henry VIII. They're all very sharp. And for them, Lolly created an order called the Order of the Queen's Heart. And for that Order, she commissioned pewter badges, a great honor, to be sure. This year, she gave our Royal Guard, my Royal Guard this great distinction that had until now only belonged to the Minnesota Guard. Words cannot express how much that means to me. For my entire run as Julien Grey, I have strived for such a worthy Guard as this. And it took what I thought it would take: breaking the Royal Guard off into its own troupe again. That meant I could have the creative control, the casting control. No longer would the Royal Guard be the dumping ground for men who got onto the cast, but didn't fit in anywhere else. No longer the rag-tag Keystone Comedy Cops routine. Yes, we played. We were goofy at times, but also, we were sharp when we needed to be. I am damn proud of those kids.
Also: Justin might be the prince next year. Or a prince anyway. He's going to audition, at least. He even got a sort of endorsement for the effort by Rob, the Entertainment Director and Fearless Leader. Which is why he is practicing speaking in the third person, you see. It seems there's been a lot of pretty princes, some down right girlish. But he plans to play a big manly prince. Soldier and scholar and ready for the throne, etc. He thinks it would be a great learning experience for him, and an opportunity to expand and stretch himself as an actor. It's also more inspiration for him to get into shape.
The cast party slash talent show was awesome. Our "dirty" version of "Seven Drunken Nights" went over fabulously. Mmm, free Guiness. It was nice to stick out a little more. The red shirt really helped out there, I guess, though I don't really know why. But it's best not to question, merely accept the results. If only it had resulting in something more than just a bunch of (mostly female, even!) people telling me how great it looked. And it doesn't help that Holly showed up Saturday, told me she missed me, hugged me and smelled good. I hate it when they do that. All smelling good and crap. Anger! And, predictably, it lead me to think of this time last year. And just how much I miss her. So very much.
This could be a weird holiday season. My grandfather, Jim, is in the hospital right now. He may be well enough to come home by Thanksgiving, which I hope for. My grandmother has been getting a little more and more emotional in the past few years. Granted her mother died a couple of years back, but for Pete's sake, the woman was in her 90's. It hasn't helped that almost all of her grandkids have moved off and out and away to college and/or lives elsewhere. So I'm really hoping things don't get bad anytime soon. Because mental breakdowns by the grandparents aren't pretty. But there are some silver linings. Jim is doing better. I don't have to fight about Thanksgiving dinners for once, since Randy's side of the family isn't doing a get together. Which is a terrible thing to say, but, hey, you don't get to be the black sheep by not stepping on toes. We'll see. Maybe I should be a teacher so I can get the summer off and get a Christmas Break. Hmm. Naaaaaahhh. I hate kids too much.
Well, that's most of what's on my mind right now. You crazy kids keep it down. And get off my lawn!
ever and ever and on and on. my sweet, dear kae, i love and miss you