Friday, February 15, 2013
Wormsloe Colonial Faire & Muster
In the past few years I have realized a lot of dreams but this one was extra special. How many times have I answered the question "History, what do you want to do with that degree? Teach?" with "No, I want to work as a costumed interpreter at a historical site". Well, I present this first picture. A dream come true.
Last weekend was the Colonial Faire & Muster at Wormsloe. I was mostly just an extra body, although I was "assigned" to the cricket pitch for the afternoons (more on cricket later) but I didn't really stay there because they had lots of people and there were things I wanted to see. I think the most dreamlike part of the weekend was when I'd be looking at something or standing by a house or cannon (like the tourist I am) and someone would ask if they could take my picture. ME! My picture!!! *I* am usually the one taking pictures!!! It was awesome.
Of course I wasn't the only reenactor. All the staff were in costume (on the left is my boss John and in the middle is his boss Chris) and we had a bunch of local reenactors who only come for the Faire there as well.
Mostly I just spent the weekend helping with whatever needed to be done. On Friday John and I moved hay bales and barrels, washed 40 pounds of oysters, and I raked a bit and Chris taught me to play cricket.
During the fair I helped out a lot in the Visitor's Centre in the mornings, played cricket (some) in the afternoon, and wandered around handing out programs/taking in the festivities for the rest of the time. In the photo above John and Chris are marching in the noon day parade. It happened both days and there were speeches by reps from the Georgia Historical Society and reenactors portraying General Olgethorpe and John C. Freemont (the featured Georgia Historical person this year) as well as various sponsors. Following the speeches there was a musket firing demonstration although those went on all day along with cannon firing.
This is Chris's son Wyatt. The cutest colonist there!!!
Of course, like any good event, the real fun started after we shut the gate. (Remember that I live a good hours drive from Wormsloe). On Friday I went in as soon as my class was finished and then came home around 6pm or so. John told me I could leave earlier (because I usually end at five) but I told him I'd finish what we were doing and then head out. He laughed and replied "right, because you're getting paid and everything" (which of course I'm not. My intern-suretudeness was a big joke all weekend. That is John's way of combining "Intern" and "Indentured Servant".) Saturday after we finished a bunch of use went into downtown Savannah for dinner. Almost all the staff were there, some volunteers and many of the reenactors. I drove a few of the people that were there from out of town and by the time we got back to the site it was after 10pm. I could have driven home. I wasn't actually all that tired and that was the original plan but when I heard that a few people were staying in the museum overnight, I decided that sounded good for me too. I borrowed some blankets that John had in his truck (he went home for the night) and a pillow from Adam and Adam, Jesse, Paula and I slept on the floor in the museum over night. It was a literal "night at the museum" and it was fun. Low key. I mean we're historians after all. We argued about our favourite presidents! And Jesse read us Mark Twain from his iPhone. It wasn't the best sleep I've ever had but it was far from the worst and even though I had to run to Walmart in the morning to buy a toothbrush, it was worth it. Plus I saved a ton on gas.
So that was my weekend. The best part? Just being there. Being around all those people who love history as much as I do and LIVING what I'm learning. At the end John asked "So is that it? Will we see you again?" I told him that until I'm forced to go back to Canada he can expect to see me every Friday if they want me. And even if they don't, I'll still hang around :D I've way exceeded the 10-12 hours that I had to do for my course (heck I had that by noon on Saturday) but I love being there and I think they kind of like having me around as well :)