Tuesday, May 24, 2016

RenFaire? - "You're mad, bonkers...But I'll tell you a secret. All the best people are." Lewis Carroll

Under a folding card table serving as a writing desk, our youngest daughter, Hannah, claimed a living room corner. Sheltered. Quiet. The space spoke to her.

Hannah called, “How old do you have to be to stop making forts?”

I was cooking in the kitchen, and my wife was nearby doing research. Our answers were simultaneous, “Never.”

Hannah scrambled out, and eyed the throw quilts on the sofa. “Daaaad,” she began sweetly, “do we need both of these blankets?”

I knew where this was heading. “I’d prefer if they stayed on the sofa. I’m sure you can find something else. Need help?”

“Nope,” Hannah replied, flashing a mischievous grin. For the briefest moment, I felt that parental twinge…the reluctant and joyful realization that my little girl is growing up. She’s making her own magic. That’s how it should be.

I returned to dinner. Ten minutes later, pillows served as the third wall, a huge knitted cotton blanket softened the floor, and bathing towels draped over the desktop for the fourth wall. Voila! Fort complete…Hannah disappeared underneath…doing Hannah things. Mad scientist, budding superheroine, relaxing with electronics - it was all good. Yes, even the technology. You can’t deny the future, but I dare to think it can be shaped; cause and effect, unless were playing Queen’s Rules in Wonderland, which, by the way, we also do when the “Willy Wonka” mood strikes, for indeed, “a little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men.”

A person needs a hidden lair to do things…a secret lair…or an open Faire! A bizarre of creativity, an elixir of life, a realm to explore, with characters to delight - why of course, it’s the New Jersey Renaissance Faire!
As a parent, I’m constantly assessing the “moments” I share with my children. It’s the actions and experiences that will stick with them, not the words. Opportunity, as defined in Merriam Webster, is a favorable juncture of circumstances; a good chance for advancement or progress. To be able to recognize opportunity, and to convert opportunity while ensnared by a vibrant live-stream of pungent wit, witless pun, and timeless fun - those gifts I’ll gladly serve to my children.

The annual pilgrimage to Liberty Lake is less than a week away, and I keep looking over my shoulder for the Pardoner, the Knight and the Wife of Bath. You still have time to change your plans, and perhaps your life. My girls are already choosing frocks, dusting boots and eyeing swords. The leather grips on their blades bear a slight stickiness with the humidity. The steel is not polished…a drop of oil perhaps to remove the dirt. There’s no fanciful etching, but these master works from the RenFaire blacksmith are cherished. So are the trinkets and odd tokens, the purses and corsets, the music and company; this medieval community is like visiting an eccentric grandfather who tilts at windmills. Rain or shine, you can breathe deeply in the Faire’s rural air. Although, it’s the twinkling in the Faire Folk’s eyes that that you inhale the deepest. It’s infectious merriment, unless you’re dead, but even the dead can be resurrected with the proper dice roll. Let’s see, is that 2d6 on the System Shock check and how many Level/Constitution points?
RenFaire can hoist the anchor, but traveling beyond the harbor is up to you. Venture the quest! “Tis better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all.” (Tennyson). What price can you put upon generosity of spirit? “How little is the cost I have bestowed, In purchasing the semblance of my soul, From out the state of hellish cruelty!” (Shakespeare).

How old do you have to be to stop going to RenFaire?


NJ RenFaire

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home