A New Friend Thursday, May 28 2009 

A New Friend

23 May 2009

(edited on 29 May) 🙂

I actually know people who believe that one can have too many friends. I don’t.

Granted, the word “friend” is used far too loosely. Most of the people that most of us call “friends” probably would be better described as “acquaintances.” Social network sites like MySpace and Facebook do much to muddy those waters. I, for one, am very picky about who I add as a “friend” on such sites. And, I don’t know many of even those people, as well as I’d like. But, to really have “too many friends?” I don’t think it’s possible!

On that note, Kyle and I have a brand new friend, effective today! She made my day, and so I introduced her to Kyle and snapped their photo. Her name is Terry . . . although, I realize now that I didn’t find out the correct spelling of her name, so I may have it wrong.  (addendum: just found out it should be “Teri.”) She is charming and effervescent, witty and engaging. She is a playtron at the faire, and a talented seamstress (she showed me her husband’s doublet that she’d recently made!) and obviously we have much in common! 😉

The story of our meeting, is what is so special to me . . . I was sitting at the table in our Pendragon Costumes shoppe, finishing up a discussion with a special order customer. As I was bidding those folks farewell, I heard one of my girls telling someone, “she’s right over here . . .” and I knew I was about to be asked a question of some kind. As my worker spoke to introduce the scenario: “MaritaBeth . . . ” the customer interrupted: “You’re MaritaBeth! Hi!”

I didn’t recognize the face, so I cheerfully but curiously replied with “Hi. Do we know each other?” She immediately, but only briefly got rather shy, and quietly said, “Um, no. I follow your blog.”

That was my introduction to Teri. I was, of course, rather floored, and incredibly flattered. How? Why? I wanted to know. Her interests in faire and in costuming and sewing are the logical connection. We chatted for quite a while, and before she left Kyle came in and more conversation ensued, and photos happened.   She told us she had followed intently, our travels in the UK this winter!  And, she said even on the regular days we are entertaining to her.  I was so surprised to think that somebody we had never met was following the KRuMB. We know that we have friends (and acquaintances) who read the KRuMB and rarely, if ever, make a comment, and thereby stay pretty much under our radar. But, I hadn’t really stopped to consider that there might be people out there following our daily adventures, that we hadn’t even met, yet! It still actually rather boggles my mind.

Well, now we know one more reader! And I’m glad to call her a friend. (Now, I just hope she’ll write us a comment and tell me how to spell her name!) 😉

~MB

(tee hee: she linked to me on Flickr! I guess she doesn’t have to give up her stalker status here on the KRuMB! Hi, Teri! :-P)

Woman in Blue Wednesday, Dec 3 2008 

29 November 2008
MB in Blue
I write about my wife a lot saying "MB did this," or "my wife and I did that" or similar. But, there aren’t that many photos of her here. Mostly, I think, because she’s critical of her own appearance (aren’t most women?) and likely wouldn’t approve of most photos. However, this is the smiling face I go to sleep with every night and wake up to every morning. The woman of my dreams.
Cheers.

~KR (Written on 3 December 2008 )

Listening to:
Betty Lou’s Gettin’ Out Tonight by Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band
from Nine Tonight

Camera: Nikon D70
Exposure: 0.008 sec (1/125)
Aperture: f/5.6
Focal Length: 135 mm
Exposure Bias: 0/6 EV
Software: Adobe Photoshop CS Windows

Dancer in a Spin Wednesday, Nov 26 2008 

Dancer in a Spin

23 November 2008

I took a break from the shoppe today!  My first time out of the booth during the faire day in three weeks.  I had intended to walk the areas of the faire I hadn’t seen yet, this year, but instead, I spent a lot of my time at the nearest stage to our booth, watching Wine and Alchemy.  Formerly E-Muzeki (with a different mix of members), the amount of enjoyment I got from this show was a surprise to me!  Some dancing, some singing, lots of fun instrumentation, and perhaps the highlight—an incredibly talented male dancer!  This guy completely commanded my attention when he danced.  I was so impressed. 

It was another average day for us in sales, although up until the last sale of the day, I was a little worried.  The crowd was very light—kept small by the weatherman who had foretold rain that never really came.  We felt a few little drops at one point, but anything wetter must have happened somewhere else.   But, at least the small crowd allowed me to see a show!

~MB

“Antique Rogues Show” at TRF Tuesday, Nov 18 2008 

Antique Rogues Show 10

16 November 2008

After a Saturday at TRF that finally rocked and rolled for us at Pendragon—there was even better music on Sunday!  The Rogues, formerly known as the Scottish Rogues, and more recently, disbanded, reunited on Sunday for four amazing performances during the faire day.  How wonderful to have Bryan, Randy, Jimmy and Lars all in one place, and playing together again!  (Even EJ joined in for a couple of songs.)

I was lucky enough to be able to get out of the booth with Kyle for long enough to catch the third show of the day.  It was almost like old times—except that we’re all so much older!  The original “Rogue Rat”, Erin French, was there with Bobby and Paige!  She’s sixteen, now and her little sisters were the ones dancing in Daddy’s arms and running around.  Bryan had his two pre-teen boys collecting tips!  And, sadly, there wasn’t a lot of lilting going on.  But, the music and the spirit and the fun was certainly not lacking!  What happy memories—what a great performance in the “now.”

Thanks, guys!  We miss you!

~MB

Faire Jewelry Tuesday, Nov 18 2008 

14 November 2008
Taking a page from my wife’s playbook, I am posting this as my November 14th photo even though it was taken on the 15th, because I have not yet gone to bed. 🙂
Faire Jewelry
We celebrated a co-worker’s birthday this evening at Rob’s. I’d intended to rush straight home and get an early start on the drive; but the politic, the proper, the polite thing to do was…stop for a beer. Happy Birthday, Earl!
Rod & Alyson were already at the house and had made peace with the puppies which enabled MB & I to begin the drive knowing that our little creatures would be in excellent hands for the weekend. We cannot possibly thank Alyson & Rod enough for their willingness & ability to house/dog/cat sit for a couple of days. Much love to them both.
We arrived at TRF safely, unloaded the car, and started the going-to-bed dance…without a photo. Luckily, MB had just deposited this necklace on a table, so I grabbed my camera and took the photo. Good thing, too, since I was sound asleep about 45 seconds later.
Cheers.

~KR (Written on 17 November 2008 )

Listening to:
One by Bono
from U218 Singles

Camera: Canon PowerShot SD850 IS
Exposure: 1 sec (1)
Aperture: f/2.8
Focal Length: 5.8 mm
ISO Speed: 200
Exposure Bias: 0/3 EV
Flash: Flash did not fire

Fairy-licious! Tuesday, Nov 11 2008 

Fairy-licious!

9 November 2008

I stalked a fairy today.

And I caught her.  Or perhaps I should say that she caught me.  She certainly captured my attention.
 
I was in the ladies restroom washing my hands, when this creature came in.  I was duely impressed, and I think I may have told her so, as I watched her disappear into the largest stall. (Wings are a handicap, you know!  Not unlike hoop skirts!) As I walked back across the lane, I realized I’d really like to have her picture.  So, kept an eye over my shoulder for her to come out of the building, and I asked Donny if I could borrow his camera, since I am woefully without one right now.  He quickly obliged, and I tripped back across the lane to wait for her to reappear.  And waited. 
 
Finally, I began to feel a bit silly about stalking a fairy, and started to back away from the restrooms, back toward my booth, all the while watching for my fairy.  I was all the way back to the shoppe, still looking longingly across the lane when our friend Pam asked me what I was doing.  I told her my story, and her immediate response was, “I know her!”
 
“Of course you do,” I said, and in fact, further conversation verified that her friend and my fairy were one and the same.  Finally, as we talked, the fairy emerged from the restrooms and Pam bounded across the lane after her.  Moments later, my fairy was shaking my hand and accepting my compliments on her charming and creative recreation of what I guessed must be an Amy Brown painting.  Amy Brown’s fairies all have a “style” and this was it.  She told me her truest inspiration was actually Renae Taylor–another very talented artist, from Kansas City, who actually does renfaires.  In fact, I own some of her work, and these black and white fairy’s wings were made by her.  Either way, I told her, she was a breath of fresh air and a delight.  I told her I’d been waiting, and waiting for her, and feeling like a stalker, and she related just how complicated it is to use a bathroom when dressed as she was!  We giggled about that, and she willingly posed for my picture (and for a couple of others as well!) 
 
We see a lot of fairies at the Renaissance Festival.  Who really knows why?  The fantasy element is undeniable at a renfaire, and certainly the costuming is less restrictive of movement and perhaps more comfortable . . . except for the wingspan, of course.  Some faires have even embraced the fantasy and included it in their performing company—Bristol Renaissance Faire does an extremely noteable job of this, with their “Fantasticals” and the way their other historical characters play with them.  I’ve seen a woman in noble garb react to being tapped on the shoulder by a fairy, by “seeing nothing” and talking to the patrons around her about how if she didn’t know better she might be drawn back into the days of her youth when she still believed in fairies.  Fun bit.
 
My fairy is a patron at the Texas Renaissance Festival.  She is dressing up not to fulfill a contract, but because she loves the smiles she brings to other people’s faces.  Like mine.  Oh, and she calls herself, “Nyte.”
 
Thanks, Donny, for the use of the camera!
 
~MB

Our German Friends Tuesday, Oct 28 2008 

Our German Couple

25 October 2008

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about the wonderful experience we’d had at the Pendragon Costumes booth at Texas Renaissance Festival, working with a couple who had come all the way from Germany to order our product.  Two weeks later, after Nicole rushed to get part of their order done before they left the country, here are our new friends in their new finery!

When they were done at our shoppe, Mary walked them to Guild of Toledo (an Excalibur Leather shoppe) for new boots and a hat for him.  Perhaps she’ll link a photo of them after that shopping spree, when she sees this post!?

~MB

To Err is Human; To Arrrr is Pirate! Tuesday, Oct 21 2008 

Patron Pirate Clan at TRF

19 October 2008

Another really beautiful day at the Texas Renaissance Festival.  I cannot figure out why the crowds this weekend weren’t much bigger.  It was perfect weather for being outdoors.  But, sales were fairly average, so again—I feel I cannot complain. 

At one point, late on Sunday afternoon, I looked out into the lane in front of our shoppe and saw a gaggle of young boys all dressed in almost identical pirate costumes.  I was so impressed that so many boys had cared enough to dress up!  So often today’s kids, especially boys, get all bent out of shape when someone suggests they might do something out of the ordinary, or different from what other kids do.  Of course, by the very nature of the group of them doing the same thing, I suppose there might have been some of that going on, anyway!  But, I was taken by it, and I grabbed my camera and ran into the lane to try to capture the sight.  The obviously saintly women herding these kids, had their work cut out for them, and it just wasn’t possible to get them all in a candid photo.  So, I complimented them on their outfits, found out they were all cousins (!) and asked if I could take their picture.  All but one were more than willing, and the group gathered, while the one front and center whined, “Why do we always have to have our picture taken?”

I told him it was because they all looked so great, and I thanked them for going to the effort to participate in the spirit of the faire.  The ladies seemed grateful for the praise, and the boys were off down the lane.  But, I got my photo, and although I don’t know anything else about who they are, I am charmed by it.

I love the youthful energy it captures.  I love the feeling of fun and adventure.  I am delighted anytime any patron has taken the time to play along and dress up to come to faire.  No matter how many “packaged” pirates . . .  no matter how many poorly-made Simplicity patterns . . . no matter how many “Witharrrrrds” in bathrobes and fake beards . . . I am happy to see them.  That a patron takes the time, energy, money, and imagination to buy or make or borrow whatever his or her idea of a costume is, and then wear it, is a gift to those of us who need the faires to be successful.  Without the people who have that sense of fun and participation, I wouldn’t have a job. 

Thank you, pirate clan!

~MB

Queen Anne’s Lace at TRF Tuesday, Oct 14 2008 

Queen Anne's Lace at TRF

12 October 2008

A lovely day at the Renaissance Festival, made lovelier by this group of beautiful women!  Queen Anne’s Lace is an energetic, talented group of ladies who sing like angels.  Whether they’re performing bawdy songs at a renfaire, sacred songs at a funeral, love songs at a wedding . . . it doesn’t matter—-it’s all fabulous!  We are a bit biased, of course, as these girls are very dear friends.  But, one good listen, and there’s no denying we’re right!  I snapped this photo during an 11 a.m. show, just outside our booth (where the stage used to be), while the girls were performing my request:  “The House is Haunted!” 

Sunday of opening weekend was, of course, not as busy as Saturday.  Kyle and I were both feeling better, and we even got to take a quick walk in the early part of the morning.  We visited Kelly, at the secondary Excalibur shoppe, and we paid a visit to the new Merchant Prince Wine Bar—a lovely addition to the faire.

We had one really special experience, today—a couple who had travelled all the way from Germany to buy from us at Pendragon Costumes!  They had planned their holiday to coincide with TRF’s opening, and came into our booth, with literally dozens of pages they had printed from Nicole’s website!  I worked with them for nearly three hours, trying on garments, and dealing with a bit of a language barrier.  But, we had so much fun!  We have always been proud to be a part of Nicole’s business, but days like this really drive that home.

We ended our Sunday with a trip to the Copper Rose—one of three restaurants in “Toon Town,” the rennie community adjacent to the TRF faire site.  We each ordered something different, from burgers to meatball sandwiches to pork loin, and none of us were disappointed.  It was a good wind-down from the weekend, and it didn’t take too long.  I was back at my paperwork by about 11 p.m. and in bed by about one!

Thankfully, the drive home will happen on Monday.

~MB

Clearing the Way Thursday, Sep 18 2008 

14 September 2008
Sunday. A day of rest. Yeah, not really. This is Marita Beth’s first Sunday home since June and we made a much-needed trip out to the Scarborough Renaissance Festival. We’re hoping that this off-season will be the time when we are able to expand the back of my shop into viable storage & living quarters. But, to do that we needed to take measurements of the existing structure and of the available land. But, to do that, we had to clear away the "jungle" that grows in our absence. Here’s my wife taking her determination & shears to the massive weed population:
Clearing
Cheers.

~KR (Written on 17 September 2008 )

Listening to:
9 Minutes of Woo by Needfire
from Live in Batesville

Camera: Canon PowerShot SD850 IS
Exposure: 0.01 sec (1/100)
Aperture: f/5.5
Focal Length: 23.2 mm
ISO Speed: 320
Exposure Bias: 0/3 EV
Flash: Flash did not fire, auto mode

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