I am the “Honshaplee” (the one who can see things that aren’t there, the one who is magical). The Flee Ashee (the fairies find me), in the Pink (the place in the sky), where we meet. They dance and sing and do playful things, the dew is beautiful and magical to them, they are the Sheenkooplee (the people in the sky who are beautiful and magical and little as can be). They are Ansheetoe (angels), who are sparkly and pretty and love to “eembeah” (climb the plants) and dance in the puddles that the drops of dew make. I am Ashontapleekasahasohanee (Shallalindrea, the angelic one), and you can see me in every fleenk fleenk (rainbow). I am the Shontahoo (opalescent (beautiful and angelic) one) too.
“The Pennsic War” (1996)
I have always dreamed of traveling back in time to live as did the peoples of Medieval Europe. I could dress in elegant draping garb, create necessities and art by hand, and live more in touch with nature and with the world around me. In August of this year I lived this dream by traveling to the mountains of Northern Pennsylvania for a two week long Medieval camping trip called the Pennsic War. The Pennsic War is an event that includes 10,000 people from around the globe, all joining together to reenact the Middle Ages.
A few friends and I drove into the campground at the beginning of the second week of the event. We instantly felt that we had literally entered a new world, a world where things seemed more colorful and inviting. Lords and ladies were gallivanting in brightly colored cloth and ribbon, and the fighters were practicing for future battles in full suits of shining armor. We located our shires camp site, settled in, dressed in period garb and were off to indulge in the pleasures of this new world that awaited us.
We frolicked about the villages and town during the days at Pennsic, and although we choked on the dry dirt from the road and were tormented by the stinging rays of the mountain sun, the daytime was nevertheless relaxing and enjoyable. Passing through the villages, we saw shires and households decorated with castle fronts and kingdom flags, and within the villages families and friends were socializing and small children were playing contently with hand-carved wooden toys. In town there were over 350 merchants who sold all hand-crafted wooden toys. In town there were over 350 merchants who sold all hand-crafted medieval merchandise and taught us classes in arts and sciences. The daytime was for learning, while the nighttime, the best time of the day for me, was for discovery and adventure. During the nights we wandered through the now fire-lit roads in our hooded cloaks that blew erratically in the cold night breeze. The moon and stars glowed loudly, twinkled and felt so close that i found myself reaching out to grab them as if they were fireflies. By a lake, pirates performed plays, and down a hill in the muggy swamp gypsies danced around a fire pit wearing noisy jingle belts and playing hand cymbals. There were parties everywhere, where we were exposed to people acting out their many chosen personas and cultures, through the music, dancing and stories that existed in that period of time.
On our final day in this world we watched the field battle, the war fought by two kingdoms, and for which this two week event was named. We watched in awe as 4,000 Gods in full armor charged across a mile-long field, crashing and screaming, fighting until the last participant was down. In my wildest imagination nothing could have prepared me for these sights and sounds. This was my idea of a “smashing” end to a vacation.
On the final day in this world I watched the field battle, the war fought by 2 kingdoms, and for which this 2 week event was named. I watched in awe as 4,000 fighters, in full armor, charged across a mile long field, crashing, screaming, and fighting until the last participant was down. In my wildest imagination, nothing could have prepared me for these sights and sounds. This was my idea of a “smashing” end to a vacation.
The local parks are of course beautiful in the summertime, but in the early winter there is a kind of subtle magic. When we are not distracted by the stunning beauty of flowers, bright green leaves and vibrant energy-giving sunshine, it allows us to slow down and feel the essence of nature, to see and hear the soul of the plants and trees, to listen to the whispers in the breeze, to feel the calm in the flow of the water. Nature is truly in a peaceful slumber… the way I believe we are meant to be during this time of year.Continue reading “A Magical Stroll through Nature in Winter”