My HANBOROUGH day was a bit different!
I had polished and set out my armour the day before, so when I was up nice and early in the morning, all I really had to do was take a shower, cook up some lunch for later, have a nice poo and load up the car with my stuff.
It had been arranged that Matthouse and Phill would arrive at my house at 10:15 am, and we would set off to HANBOROUGH soon afterwards. What actually happened was that Matthouse forgot the newly purchased child's bow (my bow being far too powerful for a child to use) and had to return home for it! So, although we were supposed to begin setting up at 11:00am, we didn't actually leave the house until that time.
I should add that it had been pouring with rain while I was loading the car, and I was fully aware that it would be impossible for us to run an archery stall in wet weather as the moisture stretches the bowstring. Phill complained bitterly about the weather, and how "we couldn't do ANYTHING at all", but I told him to shut up and he eventually did.
So, we eventually rolled into HANBOROUGH at 11:15. The field was almost deserted, and I approached the organizer about where we were to set up. I had been promised that our area (which would be used for the archery and weapon demonstrations) would be one of the first ones that visitors would see.....except that - as usual for HANBOROUGH - they had "mysteriously forgotten" all about this arrangement, and insisted that we set up our area right at the back corner of the field - a position that was only visible by those who had reached the small gap between tents at the back of the main drag of stalls. Our demos would be done in an arena that was far, far too large for our purposes - and no amount of arguing was going to shift them from their position! The organizers themselves then told me that they didn't know "how large their display arena was going to be" - or indeed where
it was going to be! Resigned to a crap part of the field, I went and told the chaps, neither of which were impressed.
At this point, the wind began to blow most strongly, something that was to feature throughout the whole show. It is quite likely that the wind muffled the choice words I mumbled at the retreating forms of the organizers, but they certainly knew I was angry. It was very unlikely that we were going to make much money as most people simply wouldn't see our stall! Even so, we set up the arena, target and archery net, and hoped that the wind would die down...which it did not!
Pausing only to change into period clothing, we decided that it was OFFICIALLY time for lunch (which pleased Matthouse), and there was nothing to do except try to work out the logistics of getting into armour - and at what time we would need to start putting it on...
Suddenly it struck me that we didn't have a float of change for those handing us cash to try their luck at hitting the target from a paltry 8 metres away. I Wandered over to the pavillion building (which served as the control area for the event) to gain said coinage. While waiting for the woman to return with this small amount of money, I glanced up and saw the looming forms of Hears and Jermery approaching. It was at this precise moment that a small chunk of forgotten onion relish dislodged itself from between my teeth, and I was forced to look away while "disposing" of it. The cash woman returned, and before I knew it, my CoG chums were upon me. "As IF
I need to ask..." I began, then greeted Hears as "Hears" and Jermery as "Jon" (though I have no idea why I did that. I can report that he was "Jermery" for much of the day, but was also referred to as "Jeremy").
It was time to introduce the travellers to the members of The Fellowship, so we set off for the crap end of the field. Although the show should have started, many stall owners were still arriving, and it was then that tragedy struck! Glancing over to the other side of the field, we espied an old chap with walking frame strolling casually along, apparently oblivious of the approaching car/van thing which had narrowly avoided running over a dog! I was about to call out a warning, but it was already too late - the vehicle had stopped within a dangerous three metres to the side of the old man, and he immediately fell into a dramatic display of (near fatal) overacting before staggering back towards the vehicle, obviously enraged! The end of this dramatic encounter can be seen in Hears' most excellent video at 0:26 minutes in!
Finally, it was time for the show to start, and the item that all were looking forward to began: THE SCOOTER PARADE
. Anger began to overtake me as I realised that I would have to deal with an approaching family, and would miss the action. I sent Hears and Jerm off to capture this event for the ages, and am stunned that one of the competitors appears to have been "nobbled"! I had seen three entries earlier, but only two were actually involved in the parade. Foul play, methinks! The REAL ELVIS
was also clearly disappointed, but he passed a wise judgement, and the winner was crowned, though I have no idea which one it was!That's enough excitement for this installment, so you'll have to tune in next time for more!
Here is a photo of our archery area, a close up of footage from Hears' video. You can see the flag I showed being made on here, along with my bright red hose! This is the chap who works at my local pharmacy and his family being shown how to shoot!