MD part due, it's a long and hot one

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ptp...@yahoo.com

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Sep 6, 2013, 9:56:19 PM9/6/13
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This is going to be long. I have already had items boiled out of my brain, so let’s see what I remember. Dates, events, names and orders of things WILL be forgotten. I’ll just see what is still in here.

AIR CHEWING
During the week the weather report has been changing over and over. On Friday, I reloaded everything into the costume house. On Saturday, the weather promises hot humid and maybe rain, but we are just not sure when. I get to my stage after stopping for brekkies. I get to Gatehouse and it’s still a bit cool, though I know it won’t last. Richard Southwell shows up as I begin my makeup and we catch up on the week and share weather predictions for the weekend. Then Isabella D’Este shows up and stretches with us. I have been able to time when I am trying to put the glittery yellow make up on to when the sun peeks onto Gatehouse and I can’t see what I am doing…it seems to be clockwork so far. SMKatherine shows up as I am packing up and she can sweep my spot.

SWITCHING AND SINGING
I head down the hill to the Costume House past the already fragrant privies. Oh joy. I arrive as the house has just been opened and I head in. I have been having some knee issues so I am partially dressed and have to take it all off to put the knee brace I forgot onto the knee I want to protect. I finish suiting up and head outside to have someone help me put on my wings. Once dressed, I head to the Lyric for morning meeting, making a stop at Jezzards for the new Mustard leaf hairpiece. Then to the stage to practice some singing with Christopher Spittle in advance of Pub Sing this weekend. I check in and am pleased that my water cup is still holding water and balancing. Morning meeting runs smoothly and we note plans should we get water from the sky. Then, BEEP and away we go.

LIMITED REACH
I hit the privy on the way to the front gate and then do a bit more stretching. This is limited this year since I can’t lie down as there are large green flappy things on my back, so my stretches are all about my legs and shoulders. Once the poor Duke screams for his life and the cannon booms, I am up and welcoming guests. There are fans from Canada to NC and beyond. I give out many hugs. One person asks me if I found my wand as they were told I had it. Sadly, the answer is no. The question came up quite a bit this weekend. I appreciate everyone’s concern and support. While I don’t expect I will see it again, I hope to find a way to reach to others in a different way. Knuckles and I shared a few tours and I get many hugs. I even see some other swordsmen.

BLESSINGS
The first rush is over and I head into the site. This is very early and I have time to address others as I walk about…well, chitter. I meet a little girl who is fascinated by the fairie and we chat a bit. She is so strongly attuned that I pull out one of my ribbons. It says Believe…as all the cool kids believe in fairies. She is thrilled. I chat with another group and someone says that they don’t like mustard. I pout immediately and start to mope away. I wander toward the bottom of Stub Toe and sit down in front of a booth. I begin to sing…in gibberish…and just look about to see who notices the tune. Once in a while, someone does. I stop by Piland’s but the Master of the House is not there so I don’t know if the waiting is over or not. I see cheese rolling, but head to the other side. Without the fairy garden this year, I am not hanging much on the stairs this year. I do visit those on the Bullseye bench when I run into Master Spittle. He tells the patrons that he can translate for me and that I love him. He is wrong on a regular basis and by the end I want to kill him…I end up walking away in a huff. (This is on purpose…I love Spittle behind the scenes).

MANGLED TALES
I have started carrying a little piece of peasblossom with me on street. I tell some people about the other fairies having left me in town and gibberish until a single English word comes out. It always gets a laugh. Someone once commented that they like Mustardseed angry, so I am finding more levels for her. I head down the hill and get my things from the wonderful climbing wall people. As I come to the stage, the Ditty Sisters are already packing up. I head to the stage and we have a good little crowd. I get a variety of people, but again get a boy for Goldilocks. The chair breaks well today. This crowd begins to start saying the tale along with me…they seem to be doing it more and more each day. The crowd seems happy. As I am packing up, one little girl wants to tell me why she should have been Goldilocks. Soon after, a little girl comes up to me and tells me she can’t find her mommy. She is frightened and starts looking around. I start asking her about what her mom was wearing and start looking around. As I look to the back of the house, I see a woman sitting in the back row and realize it’s her mom, but the little one has tunnel visioned and can’t see her. Once I can tell it’s here, I walk the little girl to her mom. Her mom thanks me and how I addressed her child’s concern. I finish packing up my props and drop them off with my favorite new men, then head up the hill.

I REALLY NEED TO WORK MY CARDIO
I climb the hill with my open umbrella and stop at the top of the hill. To breathe…heavily. I remind myself that I am out of shape. After a brief moment, I head back through the grounds and while mostly just waving and saying hello, do stop to give directions to a few people…which works surprisingly well in gibberish with gestures. Once backstage, I pull get into the costume house and realize how damp I am. I pull off as much as I can and redo my hair for Columbina once I am done with Stupina. Then, I clean my face off and discover how red my face is under the makeup. Blargh. I just leave the liner on my eyes and begin to change. It seems such a shame to put on such nice dry clothing, but it must be done. I grab my props and head backstage to Gatehouse and set them for the show. I have brought up some water with me as last week I was really parched pre show. I head out to the street for my brief time to hawk. I tell people about the show. I see my reader arrive and sit down in the house. It’s time to start and I grab my props and set them. The Renaissance Man is my reader today and he does a terrific job even though the house is a bit small today. Once the show is over, I thank him and my Bob then pack up my props and clear the stage.

DRIP DRIP DRIP GOES MY BODY
I pull off my mask and feel my legs get a bit weak. I sit to repack my props and drink a lot of the electrolyte water I had brought with me. My hands are shaking, which is not normal for me. I head down to the costume house and ask for someone to open the door. Many people are in conversation and no one hears me. I ask again and a 3rd time before people realize I can’t get the door for myself. They let me in, I drop my props and lay down on the floor of the costume house. I am really wiped from the heat. My lips are parched even with all the water I had drunk both before and after the show. I am MUCH too red faced. I take a moment to not move and feel the cold floor. Once I feel a bit more stable, I sit up and get the props out of the room to their shelf. Next, I peel off layers and put my hair up for Columbina. I am slowly cooling down and Grace Hatfield offers to get me food as I realized, because of timing, I hadn’t eaten since 7:15 am and it is now 2:45 pm. Not a good choice. Grace brings a fruit cheese plate for me and I sit outside to eat them. The fruit is so juicy it feels healing. Once I finish the food, I head back in and complete the transformation to Columbina. I know I am moving a bit slow today, but I wanted to make sure I feel stable before I go out.

HUMIDITY IS NOT THE FRIEND OF ME
The final thing I do for my transition is the curl at the back of my head. It has been up for 1-1/2 hours to dry and when I take it out, it’s still wet. I have to pin it up into the rest of the hair so it doesn’t show. Blargh. Today I am burgundy and head out into the streets. I had forgotten to bring my materials over to its temporary storage place so I do it now. They noted that I wasn’t there when I should have been and were surprised. I hit the streets to begin to tell people about the show. I joke with women and flirt with men. I wander toward the food court area and chat with those sitting. Its almost time, so I head to grab my props, head to the Boars Head and SMDavid helps me mic up and makes sure the sound system is on. I chat with those on the tables to let them know what is about to happen. This is important as there are some kids eating with family in the crowd and I do want to make sure the audience is aware. Others are more thrilled to hear about what I am doing. Once Fight School is done, I turn up the volume and start my show.

FAMILIAR FACES
In the crowd are some of my loyal fans from far away, both north and south. I am thrilled when I realize they know my intro song and are singing along, which no one else has done before. The crowd is pretty good and when I chose my Canadian compatriot from the crowd, the audience is loving his response. (he blushes so prettily). The show ends well and I ooh and aah over his wife’s necklace (which is very pretty). I take my props back to their overnight space, then come back out to street and get myself my favorite frozen banana. I wander about chatting with those who have managed not to pass out from the heat. I remember that there was a pending belt loop waiting for me at the militia tent from last weekend. I head over and when they go to look for it, it’s not there but I am told it will be made shortly. I head back with an escort who seems to know who I am, well, we are both from the same village. But he, to his own regret, says he can kiss a hand as well as I. We test this theory. He does not. I then give him a lesson with the help of a lady visiting the village. She is impressed and we all part ways. I fan people more than not, as I have been all day (and will do most of this weekend). Soon enough, the day is done and I hear the cannon boom. I head backstage quickly and get out of the awful clothing. I get changed and a group decides to hit Red Robin tonight as it’s the last chance for me to get my birthday burger for free. The small group has a great time and the food is excellent. It fills a need. I am tired but find myself at home and crawling into bed by 10.

DAY THE 2ND OF THREE
I’m tired but ready for the next day. Later in the day, Stitch notes that today is Saturday again, I just have to think that yesterday, someone beat me up, but it’s only Saturday, not a 3-day weekend. I appreciated that concept. I get to the stage and start stretching out. I do not even see Richard, but when I get to the costume house, he’s there. I offer my breakfast that I didn’t finish and he doesn’t have to run away to get breakfast. Once the doors open, I head inside and get dressed. Today, the bad knee feels ok, but the other one feels off as I stepped into something odd yesterday. I put the brace on the other knee today. I refill my pouch with ribbons and other needs then head out and get help getting winged up. The Dueling Fools T-shirt lady and I talk about my schedule and she generously offers to bring me a fruit plate later in the day. I pay her in advance and profusely thank her. I sing with Spittle then grab my props today and take them up to the mid day safety spot. I pull out the ukuele and practice and tune for the show. I feel like I have been there a while and when I step out, I discover morning meeting has already started. I rush down and let SM Katherine know I am there, but silently. Once the meeting is done, we BEEP and head to the front gate.

FLOWS AND EBBS
The cannon booms and those we have been advising are finally covering their ears in the proper way at cannon. As the crowd flows in, we see a McCoy joining us and sharing our tours, though he gets to the dance on time. As the crowd rush ends and many hugs have been given, I head into the village. One of the visiting regular fairies and I have yet to meet, but I see her and her beau walking into the village. I can’t call her name, so I gibber at her…loudly. She doesn’t hear me. I pick up my pace and get louder again. She doesn’t hear me. I shriek in gibberish and she finally turns as I am close to her. She asked if that was me calling her all the way back in the village. When I nod, she apologizes, but I finally get to show off to her all of my new regalia. Once we catch up, I head into the village. By O’Shucks, I run into a human banana. Really, the guy came dressed in a fuzzy yellow banana suit. Mustardseed has a weakness for yellow, so she has to talk to him. She sits with him and his friends and she chitters with them and makes them laugh uproariously. They tell her that she has made their day and they love her. Again, I am still speaking in gibberish. I am very happy to have made them laugh so much. I wish them well and head into the village.

HOOKLESS
I head back to the militia tent, but there is still no loop. I am sad. I head back to the village and fruitlessly look about the ground where my wand was lost. I know there is no point, but I still have to hope. I wander about and chat with others. I sit at Noblesse Oblige’s bench to sing a bit more gibberish. I wander about more and see that I am running out of time, so I head down the hill of doom (which I still call it when chittering at people). I head into the boardwalk a bit and sit on a bench. Behind me, I am greeted by ExSMLiz. I show her my peasblossom flowers and she is touched. She also laughs as I recount how everyone else left town. She comments that she had planned on watching the chess game, but then realized…it was hot. I agreed with her. She went that way and I headed to get my props. I head up to the stage as the ladies are finishing. The audience is playful, but when I put my basket on the stage corner, it falls over and the man who was being kind to bring the basket back, shows of the item I had hidden for the reveal at the end, on purpose. Thanks. Today, people are so tired. I end up with a girl goldilocks who does ok, though I don’t get the joke of the gender switch. The audience seems fine with it. At the end of the show, I pack my props and answer questions. Once props are dropped off, I head up the hill and take the quick breather, then off to the Costume House after I greet some little girls on the way back (amongst the others there).

BECOMING “HUMAN”?
Backstage, I pull off the soppy wet clothing that is febreezed for the next day. I clear my face and am luckily able to cool down a little as I am red. I switch my hair for Columbina and them get changed. I get my props and lug them to the stage. Today, the Donkey Boy is reading for me and we discuss his questions and talk dynamics. He is a very well trained clown, so I understand his language and though processes. I know I will be in good hands. I head out onto the street and interact with some people while sitting on the blue chair. Once the prior show ends, I head toward the stage and move my props into the right space and head out. After a little bit of silliness, I head upstairs and begin the show. It goes relatively smoothly…well, the acting goes well…my shoe however, decides to break. This is not good. After the show, I pack the props and head downstairs where I crazy glue the shoe for tomorrow. When I get there, my fruit and cheese is already waiting for me. THANK YOU!!!! I eat quickly then get back into the cool to get changed.

PASSION AND RAPTURE
Today is the golds for Columbina. I am very pink, so I use the time to cool down as well as transition. Once changed, I head out to the streets. I wander about talking about the show to appropriate audience members and fan people. I suddenly realize the time and head back to get my props, re-tune my ukelele and head to the Boar’s Head. SMDavid hooks me up and hangs my sign. Today in the audience are a dad and his two little girls. Well, they USED to be little girls. They have been attending every Stupina show they could since they were little. A few years ago, they met Columbina. They are now old enough to see Columbina perform. I am more nervous about it than they are. The show goes ok and I switch out some music. Luckily, my uke playing goes more smoothly today. The show is fun and while the group is smallish, they are responsive.

FROM BED TO VERSE
Once I finish the show, I grab my props and head to drop them off. I don’t stay in the cool for long and head back to the street. Once there, I see 3 period poets and one Maggie who are taking words from each other as challenges to write poems. I start to host by getting word suggestions from the audience and having them vote on who was best. Everyone wins at least one. I am amused at the words we are given for love poems…cat litter, aardvark, badonkadonk, twerk and more. The poets take each word in their stride and do very well. My feet start to hurt a bit and I sit near a few other villagers who are chatting with the few people left in the village (as most have melted away earlier). The poets flirt, the cannon booms and we head backstage. Often I have gone home and eaten on second night of the 3-day, but I end up going out to the Four Seasons Grill with a small group. Tasty and good gluten free options for those who care. The dinner runs a little late and I get home and collapse quickly.

DAMPING DOWN THE DUST
Overnight it rains and on this “second Sunday”, the dust is not floating everywhere. I am grateful. I park near the road, just in case it rains again, then head to the stage to warm up. Richard joins me as well as SMKatherine and I head to the Costume house. The doors have just opened. I head in and change. One of the women near me has been having worse knee issues and she has to fight today, so I give her the knee brace to wear. I head out and sing with Spittle again. I bring props to the holding space, but head back to morning meeting where I confirm that we are singing at Pub Sing tonight. Meeting is running smooth and we confirm who is leaving this weekend, some to return. We BEEP and I head to the gate and hit the privies one last time. My reader for the day stops by to confirm with me when he needs to be at the stage. We set the details and then go our separate ways. We BOOM and the gates open.

LALALALA
After the gates open, we welcome the crowd and enjoy the breeze that comes through. After a few tours, the crowd is in and I head in as well. I have to get some music recorded and head over to meet with a Mermaid to sing about a Scotsman. We do our business and I head back out to the food court. My brain is still stuck on the song, so when I sit at Nobless Oblige, I begin to sing Scotsman in gibberish. I see a few patrons I recognize and I provide gestures and a bigger performance. They know the song and burst out laughing as I get to the punch line. It works for me. I head to the sun bowl and near the fountain, I am stopped by about 6 or so Asian photographers. Luckily, this is a much shorter “fashion shoot”. One woman is trying to call over her friend, who I can’t see, but she finally gets the person she wants and she gets her pic. I am going to try to find my belt loop and on the way to the Militia Tent, I am stopped by a lovely lady who is having a birthday. I gift her with a Believe ribbon and sing in gibberish. I then head to the tent and am happy to receive my loop for later. I head back but realize my fan is gone. I check the tent but its not there. When I head back to the birthday girl, I see the fan on the ground. WHEW! I really didn’t want to be losing more of my stuff.

THE RESULTS OF SENIORS FREE DAY
I head down and get my props for the show. I greet some patrons at the steps then head down the hill. They are finishing their show and I head to the stage when they are done. The crowd turns over and I look into my crowd. This is a MUCH older crowd. This is going to be interesting. The audience is telling the story along with me and it’s almost as if I don’t need to talk at all. It’s kinda funny. I get 2 adults and 2 kids to play. Papa Bear’s dad plays Goldilocks and they all ask me to pose for a pic after the show is over. It is rather amusing. Again, the Climbing Wall Gang is great. Support them! They are fun…just watch what you are wearing and don’t do it broken.

YEAH, IT’S DAY THREE
So I head quickly back to the Costume house and see how over heated I am. As I am changing, I hear that a few actors are at risk for going down (not making it through the heat) and one has damaged her ankle. The directors are frantically rereading the scripts and working through the actor’s days to make sure that the shows are reworked to accommodate for the change. There is even the consideration of last minute replacements. I love how this cast just steps up and makes things happen. I am so impressed with them. I finish changing, getting my props and head to the stage. I am still warm so I drink more water before I head out. Once on street, I see Sheriff Yaxley and we chat a bit. I also meet a woman who is convinced that I am going to actually transform from Stupina to someone without the mask on stage…um, no, but she says she will come to the show.

THE MOMENT OF DREAD
The other show ends a bit later than normal and I head to set up. By the time I have props ready and have said hello to the audience, I check backstage and we are one minute into the show…but my reader is nowhere to be seen. I scan, I look to the back, but nothing. The show really can’t go on without a reader and there is not even anyone in the audience who I know to trust to play with me. I am in a bit of a panic when I remember the Sheriff. I rush to the back of the house and call out to him with a hearty FORSOOTH! He heads over quickly, and with no prep, jumps into the show. I love him and owe him big!

TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES
Well, Crazy Glue is not good for wood as the shoe breaks again as does the hat. I work around it, but feel it is par for the course. The show is a bit disjointed, but there are still laughs. A friend’s parents are here and I feel bad that the show isn’t clicking as it could. Ah well. After the show, I am pretty wiped and I pull the face off quickly. The show ends just on time (after I have cleared), which frustrates me. I like to leave time at the end. I slowly repack and lug my props after making them lighter by some water. Once back at the costume house, I put props away quickly. I didn’t plan a lunch, but I know I can eat when I get out on street, which will be ok today.

SURPRISE DISGUISE
I finish getting changed and because of the heat, I am running a bit slowly. I have developed a heat rash from the necklaces and clean off the green yuck from the back before I put it back on. Joy. Finally, I am dressed in…wait for it…BROWN. Yes, just to screw with everyone, I have yet another costume combi to wear for today’s show. White Chemise and skirt, bodice and pantaloons all the same brown. Heheheheh. I am evile… in a pathetic weak way. I head out and stop to see a sweet young man to get a steak on a stake. This is my first one of the season and it’s really tasty. I am deciding which table to sit at and go for a table that has a couple at it. I say hello to them and turn to the other couple at the other side of the table. It’s the same man and woman who I spoke with at Stupina’s show. I asked them what they did today, which I always do with patrons, and they actually start telling me about my show. This never happens. I always hear about everything else, so this was fun. After chatting a while, the woman says I have the same eyes as her. This has also never happened. I usually switch so much that people don’t even recognize them. I dissuade her but teach them a bit about Commedia Dell ‘arte. I take my leave and find more people to joke and chat with.

SURPRISE APPLIES
I head to get my props and get miced up. I chat and introduce myself to those in the crowd. I do have to inform someone that the DSA is the other side of the pub and they are very gracious about moving. I head to the stage to start and the sound isn’t working. SMDavid s right on it and I am up and running quickly. In the crowd is a woman who informs me that she plays courtesan, Lucretzia. I think I may be doing something right, as she is laughing up a storm. I have a few other fans in the crowd and choose a new gent for my “customer.” He isn’t as friendly as some of the others I have had on stage, but he is amusing enough. When the show is over, I begin to clear my stage and a sales lady from the Rogues comes up to chat. At that same time, the gent who missed reading for Stupina’s show walks up and gets down on his knees to apologize. End of a three-day weekend wipes it out of all of us and he didn’t realize he had missed the show until he was on stage for his last show at the end of the day. He rushed over and apologized. I appreciated him taking the time to do so. I clear the stage for the next act that starts in another 40 minutes, but is already at the stage.

PUBBING INCORRUPTIBLY
Today, I will be singing “How the Money Rolls In” with Spittle. I take my props back and get to pirate camp a bit early, which gives me a moment to breathe. I check the set list and head in. I join for the opening number and then grab Spittle’s cup for our intro. We head in slowly to the stage (I was supposed to follow and I think he was waiting for me, whoops). But the song goes well with the whole ganza mischpucha joining in. Afterwards, I am handed a rose with no message. I spill some water on myself in the process and tell the seller to let the person know that their rose got me all wet. Maybe 10 minutes later, one of my regulars walks by and whispers in my ear that they like it when I get wet. Well, that answers that question. I join the group for the last song and at the end, the cannon booms and I head back to the costume house. There, as a thank you, one of the ladies gifts me with another rose. I also change quickly and grab Carmita to practice Captain’s Daughter. I am surprised at how good our voices are at the end of a three-day Many are not so lucky. I pack up, head out and grab some lovely Chinese food (mmmm, tea and soup). I head hope a tired puppy and start the joyous laundry.

This weekend, don’t forget to join Stupina to meet her new readers:
Saturday, Dash Rippington
Sunday, Ethelfrith Gripley

These are going to be fun!

Till next time…
Michele/Columbina/Stupina/Mustardseed
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