I needed the week to decompress and get the condo together before I write about the weekend that was Battlemoor. We’ll start with Thursday.
I made sure to pack the night before, as the plan was to work the full day and leave promptly from work. I worked the full day, jumped in the car, put gas in the tank, and was on my way. The drive wasn’t too bad, despite the random traffic jams that didn’t involve any of the construction sites. Traffic did slow down due to hard rain. Despite the traffic, I was able to arrive on site before sun down. With help, I was able to unpack the car and set up my tent before night fall. I didn’t do much that first night except chat with everyone and eat some amazing fry bread.
Friday arrived and was greeted with a hot cup of coffee. I don’t remember much of what I did, as a lot of it was running around, catching up with people I hadn’t seen in a year. Come to think of it, I’m not sure what else I did on Friday. Friday night sticks out in my mind the most. Severe winds ripped through encampments. In our camp alone, one tent was shredded beyond repair. Other people, who were at Battlemoor last year, remembered tents being torn and pavilions collapsing and had panic attacks. Tents were collapsed and they went home. I don’t remember getting much sleep that night.
Once the morning arrived, it seemed entirely too early. Coffee was made long before most were awake and there didn’t seem to be a lack of supply. We were all up late and were all in need of caffeine in some form. The morning was pretty lazy, but once everyone was awake, those of us fighting were dressed and down at the lists.
The Ladies of the Rose tournament was fun, but the organization of it was sloppy, and no one knew what was going on until suddenly everyone was fighting. I found out later that the reason why there were so many fighters that couldn’t make the list was because sponsors ran out: there weren’t enough Ladies of the Rose to sponsor the fencers because of the new team format. I’m hoping they change it for next year, allowing those that have a close tie to a Lady of the Rose to fight for her. It’s more personal, I feel, and there is — in my experience — a greater desire to fight for her.
The Non-Don Tournament followed. I was able to fight in that one, and it was a lot of fun. I got to fight people that I normally don’t, and that made the tournament all the more rewarding. It took me a while to find a groove, but I eventually did and had an amazing run. I didn’t realize how brutal the tournament was until I was stopped on my way to report to the Mistress of the List by a couple of friends. As soon as I reported, I drank some water and was about to head straight back into line when they stopped me. One of them insisted that I drink the remaining water in my jug and wouldn’t let me go back in until I did.
I had hoped to fight in the Champions Tournament, but the Non-Don wiped me out. I did make sure to take pictures. The rest of the day was spent catching up with people and attending a revel.
Sunday was the Guard Tournament and Grand Court. I found myself a bit upset that my phone died and I couldn’t take any more pictures. Our guard did well, but they pulled some really tough teams and were taken out in two rounds. They were disappointed, but from the sounds of it they want to start training now for next year.
By the end of the day, I was worn out. My tent was broken beyond repair and my body was at it’s limit. Others were in the same boat. I didn’t realize how bad off I was physically until one of my friends insisted that I caravan with him. We made stops as necessary, and I made it home safely.
Unfortunately, my body had other ideas. I flared so severely that all I did was sleep and puke (nausea is part of the condition, and it was so bad that whenever I sat up, the nausea flared and I couldn’t keep anything down). Thursday was my first day back at work, and my stomach was still uneasy. The constant pain had dulled, but I didn’t want to take any chances by over doing it. Friday ended up being worse. I was apparently turning colours and I was sent home by my supervisor. Sleeping was very welcome. I remember showering at some point, then crawling back into bed.
Saturday I overslept and was almost late for a friend’s birthday party, but I managed to get there. I was grateful that my stomach wasn’t rebelling. The intense pain was gone, as was the nausea. I was able to do some fighting, but not a lot. There was a lot of excellent food and even better alcohol.
The night ended on a high note, and I was worn out enough that I went straight to bed.