Anyway. We had planned to go to one of the festivals several years ago in Minnesota, but we never ended up doing it. I think that worked out for the better, because today's festival was incredible.
On Mother's Day, there were a bunch of Holiday Benefits; Mothers gets roses, free meal plans... that kind of thing. (Dad was good with the coupons, so we got a pack thing that also included food and rides and 10% off costume rentals.)
So, here are a few of the reasons the day was so great: A) Being that it was Mother's Day, a lot of people didn't show up, so it was pretty slow to begin with. B) It was predicted to rain, so it was very cloudy most of the day, and because of that, even more people decided they didn't want to show up. C) It did rain a couple times, which flushed out all of the wimpy customers... the true Renaissance fans (us) stuck around through it, to find themselves blessed with a cool, cloudy, people-free day to explore!
Mom's new friend.
From my personal perspective, I didn't realize that most of the festival was browsing the shops. Not a lot of people know this about me (though some may suspect, and/or find it very much like me) I have a hard time saying no to people... especially when they're trying to sell me things. (I had a really hard time in Mexico.) But here, I didn't feel pressured into buying things. There were a couple times where I could tell they were trying to squeeze a few dollars out of me, but most of the time they were genuine in what they were trying to sell, and respected me if I wasn't interested. I appreciated having the time to look around, and leave the shop/stall if I didn't want to buy.
And trust me. I looked around a lot. I don't get to do that often... if you were with when we went to the Inman Park Festival, you probably know that about me. I really like to browse, and often times I don't get enough time to do that... Alec normally starts groaning half way through, or we're trying to get to something else that's at a certain time, so I get rushed. I felt I was able to enjoy the festival at a very relaxing pace this time.
Some of the other things we enjoyed beyond the shopping, was watching the performers. The "Barely Balanced Acrobats" were a comedic trio performed acrobatic stunts, while making jokes. My favorite was the "Shakespeare Sisters": Three women quoting whatever Shakespeare play you gave them. We witnessed the witches from Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet in 60 seconds, three Pucks talking all at once from Midsummer Night's Dream, Orsino quoting his love for Olivia, and more! They were amazing. I gave them a run for their money when it came to naming plays, I'm sure.
In the joust, we were paired with Sir Maximilian to cheer for; the big, arrogant, win-streak Knight, who was cruel and everyone else hated. He was the funniest though, which won out for me.
Somehow a tiny, young-Arthur type guy managed to beat him. Something about how "nobility" and a "true heart" always conquers. Whaateverr.
All of the costumes that were being worn were great quality, which meant... pretty pricey, wherever we went. Of course, the first place we checked out was by far the best of them all, and I spent about 15-20 minutes trying on quality, high-end corsets... and was ruined for most of the other clothing shops. (The one I liked from that store was $285. For a corset. That doesn't include the skirt or the shirt or the danglies or the other three skirts that put together makes the 'outfit'. Just the corset. Wow.)
But, it's okay! In the end, I found a great deal from a different shop; they were asking $200 for the whole outfit: underbust corset, shirt, and skirt. While that may still sound pricey, at all of the other places, it was $185 for JUST the bodice. Then the skirt was $35, and the shirt was $39. So, we got a deal, and I LOVE it.
If you're wondering if it's just a trick of the light that I'm glowing, it isn't... I'm actually that happy.
While I was off checking out the outfits, Alec managed to find a little crush! One of the wenches wandering the festival applies (as Alec calls it) "two inch thick lipstick" every couple seconds, planting large kisses on the cheeks of men she finds roaming without a wife or girlfriend. I wish we could have gotten a picture of it, because I kid you not, his cheeks were red! I managed to find her and got a little kiss myself, however that wasn't photographed either. Sorryy.
Kyra also had fun buying costumes...
That's right: what you see on her head are horns! Like most everything else at the festival, the cape is beautiful. I've had the honor of trying it on once (that's all the time that Kyra has spent NOT wearing it) and she seems extremely pleased with it.
Anyway, to conclude this post, we had a WONDERFUL time. I cannot commend the place enough. I didn't end up buying anything else other than the outfit, but the merchandise that we found everywhere was beautiful. From horns, to jewelry, to weapons, to clothing, ocarinas, drums, tapestries, paintings, henna art, and the awesome workers. Honestly... if I were to ever get a job anywhere, it would definitely be a place like that.
But now, I am wiped! It's time for me to head to bed, and dream wonderful dreams filled with Renaissance people, places and costumes!