Event Review - Argent Anniversary 2004 - by Zubeydah

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This page contains an event review by Zubeydah. This represents solely her opinion and views/thoughts at the time of writing, and do NOT reflect upon her Barony, her Region, her mentors and friends, or anyone else.

Okay, any Monarch that does a good Doctor Evil impression is totally cool in my book! But that’s getting a bit ahead of myself… AAA was an event that I left with mixed emotions, so I won’t be doing my normal story-style report. Instead, here are some positive moments from the weekend that really stood out…

Somehow, quite miraculously, my hubby got the entire day off, rather than just half a day! This made a huge difference in our trip, because he was able to run errands and load things such that we didn’t have to rush quite as badly. Starting off a trip rushing just makes the whole thing less pleasant, so it was wonderful he made this effort just for my enjoyment. (Love you, honey!)

On the long drive to Canton, we passed a man who obviously was homeless or a hitch-hiker, hadn’t shaved or bathed in quite some time, but who was chatting happily on a cell phone… That just struck us all as quite odd, and it reminded me of how blessed I am.

Friday night, checking into the site: Er, not much to say about this. It was just… weird and uncomfortable in spots. I did manage to chat with Lady Genevieve and work out some arrangements for the morning, confirming that our Northern Regional team would be running the waterbearing at the King’s Champion.

Saturday morning, 8:00 am: Standing at Arbors II, where there’s six fields of combat set up, confused… I thought we were only doing one?! I looked at my crew (Rayhanna & Yalenna), and wondered how we were going to cover all six, but I knew we’d handle it, somehow… We had the station up and running before armor inspection even got done, and overcame the obstacle of undrinkable water with the help of friends like Lady Brigid McCana & Lord Ikijima Katsutoshi, Lord Aethelred, and HE Sigen Fridriksdottir, Baroness Northkeep. There were many smiling volunteers from a variety of places throughout the Kingdom – Mooneschadowe provided three very skilled and capable volunteers, without whom the day would have been horrid. I did have to bite my tongue all day long as random folks repeatedly used the station as a walkway. I think next time, we’ll use Halfiras’ tourney field ropes and flags to create a ‘partition’ to herd the traffic flow elsewhere.

Saturday morning, 10 a.m.-ish: Turned over some items of largess to HL Gilyan, to her exclamation of “You’re a goddess!” We made plans for her to pick up the chocolates I’d made (and was keeping cold in the cooler chest) a bit later in the day, once it was closer to court. That put a big ole grin on my face. She said it again hours later when she saw me making devilled eggs, and got to grab a couple. She and Sir JP looked very dashing in their new garb. (JP said he traded some armoring work for garb from a costuming laurel - it was really nice.) Gilyan’s always been very cool and friendly with me, and so it was a pleasure to meet her request for largess stuff. << She later told me that there’d been so much chocolate that TRM weren’t able to give it all out, and so the rest was given to the Shire of Mooneschadowe, which made me VERY happy to hear. MS rocks, and Abe and I look at it like a second home. >>

Saturday, midmorning: Meeting Royalty - Elesar, Prince of Glen Aben, was there, acting as The Dreaded Bye for the King’s Champion. I had corresponded with him earlier in the week, asking his preference on chocolate, and let him know that there was some with his name on it just right over there at the WB station. Dang, he’s TALL, and quite the flirtatious courtier. Princess Sibri stopped by the waterbearer station so that Lady Dagmar could play with the baby for a while… Sibri comes across as so warm and kind, with no airs, only a touch of shyness at the overwhelming attention of being Queen-to-be. At one point, she asked if anyone had small-sized garb her nephew could borrow. I handed over my waterbearer’s tabard I’d made for court occasions, and she responded that it would be perfect, so long as no one expected him to actually waterbear, it being his first event. It was fun seeing him run around in it, and I got a photo of it as well.

Saturday afternoon, 2pm-ish, after he was done with the tournament: I showed Hersir Thorgrim Bjornson the two Sable Falcon charters I’d done in his colors. He picked out the one he liked… then told me; “The word I used when we spoke of this was ‘commission’.” We went back and forth as to whether or not it was a commission or gift… and after being told by Abe that Thorgrim just wasn’t going to take no for an answer, I gratefully received a stunning necklace of leaf-shaped butterscotch amber from Thorgrim. His Excellency also gave my darlin’ Abe a bracelet of roughly tumbled amber (including a nugget of rare white amber) that was period to Abe’s persona as a gift for his hard work and service… the shocked look on Abe’s face was priceless.

Saturday, 3:00 PM-ish: The Final Bout of the tournament… As the final round was going to start, Sir Burked ask Centurion Tomas Niallagain if he would honor his vow to Centurian Owen ap Aeddan, and fight at the barrier. There was a resounding response from audience and combatants when the answer was a hearty YES! The Crown Prince then explained the conflict he observed: one fighter in the combat already had the obligation of being his herald. Should his herald win, that left him without someone in that role. He asked if Owen would agree to replace him as herald, to which Owen answered yes, of course. (“I couldn’t have planned this any better! I just can’t loose!” HRH Drake chortled, with a Dr. Evil wink and pinky.) My heart was in my throat as I watched them match one another to four blows and the fifth was struck simultaneously… then ordered to fight to seven, with an announcement that if they tied again, they’d go to nine… A pause at 6-6… WATCHING OWEN WIN!!!!! Gawd, that rocked!! “Milord, where did you strike me?” “Your grill.” (THUD!) (Apparently Owen hit Centurion Tomas such that it was out of his field of vision and Tomas couldn’t tell where he’d been hit.* When he heard it was his face, he fell nobly to the concrete floor. I was deeply impressed with the level of sportsmanship, chivalry, and friendship displayed in the last fight. That, and who knew that Owen could twist and turn like a ninja like that?!?!)

Saturday, After the King’s Champion, approx. 4:30 PM: Sashaying around the shopping area after a quick dash back to the hotel to freshen up and change into our extra nice garb, and catching a lady or two lookin’ at my handsome fella. Hehhee… look all ya want, girls, but he’s MINE!

The shops were really cool and Abe picked out a neat mug from one. I wandered by the charter painting table and turned in the remainder of the charters I’d brought, including the Sable Falcon Thorgrim hadn’t picked of the two. The court section of the hall was beautiful, filled with decorations, banners, and of course, the thrones. I snapped a couple of pictures of items I thought were particularly neat: The NK Banner, the MS Banner, and an allegorical painting and a detail view of it as well. I don't know who the artist was, but I really enjoyed this piece.

Saturday evening – the Great Hall: I ran into Sir Burke and after I snapped his picture, he asked if Abe and I had ever met Simonn & Tessa. (Of course, we had not.) He introduced us in a very flowery and flattering way, so I daringly asked if I could snap their photo, too… what a gracious and elegant couple! It was awe inspiring to realize I was chatting with the last Prince & Princess of the Principality of Ansteorra, and thought of what amazing changes they must have seen over the years…

Saturday Evening - Stepping Down Court: I stood on my chair in the back row of the hall to get a better view, but even still, would have needed opera glasses or binoculars to get a good look at what was going on. Miguel & Conal looked smashing in matching white and silver garb. I heard later they made Modius a Lion of Ansteorra. (I hope to see a full court report for all the courts held that weekend.) Spent time trying to figure out if those two African American individuals in dresses were male or female… (was later told one was not, and the other was a past Queen of the East, and by Society law, had to be a woman…).

Saturday Evening - Coronation: Drake strode into the hall wearing this amazing ensemble of Roman armor, to the tune of the Imperial March, as played by the Merry Musicians Of Mooneschadowe. We couldn’t hear the various challenges, but I just barely saw him place the crown of Ansteorra upon his head. There was a minor commotion outside, and I slipped through the curtains in time to snap some photos of the soon-to-be-Queen being borne aloft upon a white wooden throne chair, carried by six well-oiled, bare chested warriors, including Northkeep’s Evan der Fultime. A seventh carried the Princess’s Blade: Gassion, cadet to Navarre, of Mooneschadowe.

Saturday Evening – Before and after Court: I was able meet Lady Genvieve, Lord Arkell, Lady Maya, and Lady Gerita, with whom I’ve corresponded so much. Arkell teased me about the likelihood that by the time my warrant is up, “every man, woman, child, dog, and horse in Northern Ansteorra will have their yellow card and gone to a waterbearing class.” Vivat to that! ;-)

FIREWORKS!!!! Fourteen Thousand dollars worth of stunningly lovely fireworks! I wish we’d had the luxury of sitting and watching the whole show. Both Abe and I missed part of it due to an errand and a miscommunication, and a bad vantagepoint. We’ll be ready for the 30th.

and posted to the ansteorran list:
Most vivid memory?
*whack* "ONE!" *whack* "ONE!"
*whack* "TWO!" *whack* "TWO!"
*whack*"THREE!" *whack* "THREE"
*whack* "FOUR!" *whack* "FOUR!"
*whack**whack* "FIVE!" "FIVE!"

(the simultaneous blows of (first part of ) the final round of the King's Champion Tournament, fought 'at the barrier')... and the roar of the crowd as these two fine gentlemen laughed with delight at the joy of the combat they'd just had.... the delight in HRH Drake's voice as he said they would next battle to seven points, and nine, if they tied again!

That tournament was the best example of chivalric fighting I've seen in all of my time in the SCA. I saw honor and integrity, I saw skill and raw aggression, and I heard Owen's laughter as he got to hit people REALLY HARD. :-)

VIVAT to our new King's Champion!!!

Huge Thanks and Kudos to my WB Team:
- Yelena of House Halfiras / Talequah
- Rayhanna Al-Muhkite of House Halfiras / Talequah
- Lady Dagmar of Mooneschadowe
- Analise van Gavere of Mooneschadowe
- Jehan de Mandeta of Mooneshadowe
- Zira Zamora of Stonebridge Keep
- Renault du Mont Saint Michel of House Halfiras / Northkeep
- Emily Magrager (no region given)
- Ollj Perala of Moonschadowe
- Carmen (no region given)
- Sydney of Tir Medioin
- Rachel of Elfsea