Happy dress up in a corset and pretend to be Elizabethan day!
That’s right, kids! It’s time to visit the Northern California Renaissance Faire!
This year, Jeannie joined Seanie and me on our annual trip to the faire. Seanie refused to dress up, so I had him wear a Doctor Who/Back to the Future t-shirt since I know the Doctor is popular with faire nerds. Jeannie borrowed a costume from a friend. We looked pretty cute, I must say:
Now, Jeannie had heard from one of her friends that somewhere at the faire was a climbing wall. If you could make it to the top, you would win a weapon. Not just some flimsy plastic sword or wooden shield, either; we're talking a real sword of metal, capable of taking off heads (we assume) or a flail or a leather cat o' nine tails. So the first thing we did was seek out the wall.
We found it, and for only $5.00 Jeannie could attempt the climb. So she promptly stripped off her skirts and got ready to try her luck.
She climbed and she climbed, but unfortunately she only made it about this high:
It was a lot harder than it looks. According to Jeans, the footholds disappear as you get higher up, so unless you've got itty bitty child feet or can jump the final few feet, there's no way you'll be touching the top. Seanie, always one to take a challenge head on, decided that he would try next.
The smug satisfaciton of a guy certain he'll make it to the top.
Not only did Seanie fail to make to the top and win a weapon, he didn't even make it as far as Jeannie. But he tried.
After failing to win a weapon, we got Jeannie back into her skirts (which is much more time consuming than most guys realize) and wandered around for a bit, getting an idea of the Faire's layout. We looped back to the horse arena just as the stands were starting to fill up for the first joust, so we decided to grab a good spot in the shade. We were in the section that cheered for the Spanish knight.
The Spanish knight was pretty cool. He tried to throw a flower to Jeannie, but it was intercepted by the guy sitting in front of her. Uncool, man. Later, he tried to throw one to me, but as I was reaching my hand out to take it some kid ran down the row and snatched it...so he could give it to his mother. I would have been annoyed, but it was cute that he wanted it for her.
The knights of France (blue) and Scotland (green) trying to catch rings on the ends of their lances.
The Spanish knight dukes it out with the English knight, Sir James. The English knight's section of the crowd was twice as large as that of the other three knights. But I guess he had the hometown advantage, so to speak.
We got a picture afterwards with the Spanish knight...who, it turns out, has a Southern accent. We totally got photobombed by that blonde chick; never seen her before or since.
Jeannie finds happiness in a turkey leg.
After eating lunch, we wandered around rather aimlessly, poking into shops and then scurrying out again because, let's face it, we couldn't afford to buy anything. (Don't get me wrong, I am a strong believer in artisans being paid fair prices for their labor...but that does price me out of most handmade goods!) It was a little upsetting that Seanie was getting more attention for his anachronistic t-shirt than we were for dressing in period clothes! It seemed like every fifteen minutes or so another faire attendee or employee would yell "LOVE THE SHIRT DUDE!" or point to the "<3 <3 <3 the Doctor" pin on their corset. I'll probably never be able to get him into historical garb again; it's much easier being a Dr. Who fan instead.
I swear I see these guys every year...
The second round of jousting involved men fully suited up in knights' armor. That was cool. Supposedly, it was a fight to the death...but, well, turns out they're awful picky about following the rules and there was very little death to be found.
The Spanish knight returned. His helmet was pretty cool looking; sure, he had no plumes but he had big curving horns.
For reasons I wasn't clear on, after he was defeated in the first round (he was disqualified because he threw dirt at the face of the English knight) the Spanish knight returned with new colors and a scarier-looking helmet.
Hey, works for me!
...and it ends with a kiss and a 'happily ever after'!
Not so much for Seanie. Although I did find a $20 bill on the ground on the way out, so we were able to buy Sonic slushies on the way home. We also stopped by Seanie's old house and chatted with his dad for an hour, which amazed Seanie because normally Old Man Buckley's only good for about four sentences.
AWESOME DAY <3