Gentle Readers,

I know I don't really post any more. I'm not even sure if I have any gentle readers left or if it's just me, Gentle Reader. This was something I really wanted to write down. In fact this is my second attempt, the first one having been eaten by my not paying attention.

If you've read this you should be aware that four and a half years ago Cortejo and I stepped up as the Baron and Baroness of Skraeling Althing. In that time we went to over one hundred events. We watched our neighboring baronies change hands. We watched the line of the north grow longer. We did our best to remind people that Skraeling Althing existed and was filled with wonderful and active people.

At the end of July, we announced our step down. Much to our surprise, only one set of candidates came forward. Where we had originally planned to have a fairly long changeover, ending with an event in Greyfells in March, we ended up with a vote of confidence happing and resolving right before the stepping up event. I think this ended up being good in a lot of ways, like ripping off a blanket, but I know I didn't really have any time to process this.

I was asked a lot "how do you feel", "are you looking forward to retirement" and other similar questions. The answer was always the same: "It's not real yet." It really wasn't. The weekend before, when I told the crowd at the event in Montreal that it was our penultimate event as Baron and Baroness, it still wasn't real. Even counting the ballots before we passed the Barony's opinions to their Majesties didn't do it.

We bustled about, just like normal at Feast of the Hare. Brought our stuff, set up, joked about not having to bring it home. Did all the things, having hit the ground running, just like normal. We entered court, after their Majesties took our seats and proceeded through our planned court. Our surprises were just as surprising as we had hoped. The collective gasps as we cut off Cortejo's hair was fantastic.

And then I stood up to give our last award; A bunny tail for a young woman we'd been trying to give the award to for most of our rein. I stood up and said the words "This is the last award we are going to give out." And that was it. I choked up and started having to blink back tears. We managed to give her her award and then it was time to say our final words. There was so much that I had wanted to say about how much we loved our barony and how much we loved watching it grow and grow into the barony that would support our successors, having outgrown what we could do for it. Instead, I spoke few words and tried to tell everyone present how blessed we felt having had the opportunity to do the job. And the tears rand down my cheeks.

And then we were done. It was over.

I think that was the moment of transition. Where I was able to throw the switch and step out from under the Coronet. I really feel like we left things better than we found them and also left the Barony with good stewards to take it forward.

I can't think of anything we could have done better.
Gentle Readers,

I now present the things Shyska asked me to write about.

Where did Kenny come from? Well, Just after Cortejo and I got married (13 years ago!) We were living in an apartment on Kent Street and Corgejo decided she wanted a cat. I didn't really want a cat, but eventually I was convinced by her and the roommate that it was a good plan and she managed to find someone who was giving away their cat on one of the Ottawa used item newsgroups. We went to pick him up from this nice Chinese family who had decided that a cat didn't fit their lifestyle after getting it declawed, having a new baby and taking a cross country car trip with said cat. He was much happier at his new house. One of his interesting habits for the first little while was not engaging in typical cat behaviors until it was mentioned in his presence that he did not do them. This is why his initials were KGB. We thought he might be a spy.

TL/DR version: We got him used, on the internet.

Why did I want to be Baron? Well, I started thinking about wanting to be baron when E&X stepped down. At the time I didn't really know what the job meant or anything like that, but I did know that I thought the hats were cool and I liked the phrase "Seek What Comfort You May". I remember talking with Kes about the possibility of running when they stepped down as not just a Bad Baron but an Evil Baron (as far over the top as we could go), cackling manically and talking about enslaving the populace during the candidates meetings and such. I thought it would be fun. When K&M stepped down, the time was just not right for us. Lydia was much younger and my SCA participation had waned. When the opportunity came up again a few years later, it just felt like the right time. I thought we could do a good job and I thought it would be fun. We seem to be right on both counts.

TL/DR version: I thought it would be fun.
Gentle Readers,

Enjoy: Processing out
Gentle Readers,

I'm not even 2 thirds through the weekend and I'm still pretty overwhelmed with what to put here. I guess it's best to start at the beginning.

Friday the ladies picked me up at work and got me home early (after a very successful day of bug squishing) and I was able to get my stuff together. I checked to see if I could get my car at the rental place early, but they were still scrambling to get enough cars for all of their reservations so it was a little touch and go. As it turns out, I left there exactly at the time I reserved.

I nipped off to pick up reyl who was acompaning me and we headed off to have dinner in Kanata before the drive up to Cupid's Nest (no, really. That's what it is called). Even with the construction it was only about a 2 hour drive. Thankfully most of the weekend traffic had already gone through.

We hung out with the other tenants of Cupid's Nest (serously! there were signs up!) for a while. I finally crashed hard at about 11:59. I'm not sure when the rest of them went to bed. I'm not even sure when Cortejo joined me. I slept pretty well, but Sun and Daughter had me up and feeding the latter before 7. We bustled around and made it to the site by about 10:30.

There I got to use the baronial chambers for the first time. It's where the magic happens. We got dressed, did scrolls, planned court, had coronets repaired, chatted with the the vicar and their magesties the royal entourage. After getting dressed, I kept ducking out and back so I could say hi to all of the people who came out to see us. It was wonderful. So many good friends came to wish us well.

The investiture was indescribable. The royal herald was one of our fellow applicants and grinned at us the whole time. Our first court was short and sweet. We had the first reading of a poem of Skrael's line. We thanked the (former) vicar in an almost perfect fashion. We announced our taxes and our whims and then we were done.

The rest of the day was spent being social and in meetings. The meetings were not terrible. The Landed Baron's one was very friendly in fact. Apparently the last time one went that long was when the baronies were not all that happy with each other. We got to see the authorizations that happened. There was sadly no fencing. Only one authorized fencer was geared up. (I was too busy in meetings)

Royal court was fantastic. There were many deserving people recognized and we had great seats!

Feast was delicious as usual although somehow the salt that I had expected in the chicken pie ended up in the apple crumble. I was blown away by the apple and onion salad. I looked longingly at the candied peel.

After feast was the promised concert by Heather Dale. It was a perfect wrap up for the day. Not only is she a fantastic performer, she also does the thing where she talks about the pieces before she performs. I love that! I could have done without the children running through the hall infront of the stage, but it petered out once finalcut got them jumping over things.

The worst part of the event was having to stand around and do nothing but look pretty while other people cleaned up my messes and gathered up and put away my stuff for me. It's so weird to not be active about that. I need to figure out how to manage that.

I got to ride with thirsty_smurf back to Cupid's Nest (I'm not kidding) and had a great talk with her about responsibilities and playing the game and letting go of the little things. We took a more adventurous rout back to the base but made it in good time. His Majesty asked if anyone had commented on my red sash, asking who I was squired to. He had earlier in the day suggested that I could tell them it was him. No one asked. I think he was a little disappointed. Someone else pointed out that I didn't even have to get authorized as I fight almost as much as his current squires.

There was drinking and eating and I introduced people to pickled cheese but I think Roak was the only one brave enough to try it.

After three beers it was time for bed. Remaining upright was no longer an option.

I can't imagine a better day to become Baron.

p.s. OMFG!!! I'M BARON!

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May 2016

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