Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Back in the Hunt at Fox Hunt

Friday and Saturday were mostly successful.

I got out of work a little late Friday afternoon, and thus didn't get 
home until about a half-hour after Ron and Robin. But I'd sent Ron the packing list, so they had started packing the truck. I went through some of the bins in the trailer and the bin of finished pouches from in the house, deciding what to leave home and what to take, and consolidating where I could. Taking the 2 Easy-Ups meant that much less space for other stuff. Truck packing was accomplished without incident, or even snapping at each other.

Then we moved inside, and I started packing up tools and the other things in the house, like price list sheets, receipt books, etc. I once more went through some bins of odds and ends that had been going to events and decided what we really needed and what we didn't, and consolidated.  Still no snapping.  We must be growing up or something.

Robin took the results of the indoor packing out to the truck, and then we went off in search of dinner. On the way home we stopped for snacks - getting up at 0-dark-thirty AM generally means the hungries before what most people consider lunch time.

Up at 5 am, and off for Earlsville, IL. The site is waaay out in the boonies, a place called Stonehouse Park, which bills itself as being a dedicated site for re-enactors. From a very quick glance at the a month or two of their calendar it looks like LARP groups use the site about half the weekends, also saw this SCA event a WWII event, and an Airsoft event. Some things the park is closed for, it looks like others it's open, altohugh I'm not sure what exactly they mean by open. Website is stonehousepark.net

We weren't too far from the front entrance, across a dirt road from a big old barn, which was used for morning court, A&S, and feast. Down said road was a house/cabin where I think feast was being cooked. Down a little further was the bathhouse with flush toilets. There was a port-o-let by the barn, which was taken away presumably for cleaning, and returned Saturday about mid-afternoon. Some areas were paved with cobble-ish pavers, and on the way in there were several pallets of additional pavers and retaining blocks. Nearer the entrance was a shed-ish building with windows (think farmstand) that had a "Troll" sign, although the SCA group wasn't using it. Looking at the website there's also an old inn/farmhouse on the property, but I missed it.

The campsites where merchants were had water and electrical taps. The water tap by the breakfast/lunch pavillion was marked as non-potable, but it appeared I wasn't the only one who used it for hand-washing. There was no hand-sanitizer dispenser in/on the port-o-let, which I've gotten used to seeing. I didn't get any farther than the bathhouse, can't comment on the various fields.

All in all, it seemed like a decent site.

The morning was drizzly, but the out-and-out rain held off until we were set up. Happy happy. We discovered that a mouse had nested in one of the EZ-Up bags. In 20/20 hindsight, leaving dog betting and rope toys in the trailer in folded-up wire crates was pretty stupid. (They were sent to the garbage or washing machine as appropriate on Sunday) The rain and later sun and wind seemed to have quickly eliminated the bit of mouse-funk. Turned out we could have left the handtruck at home, we could pull right up to our space and the ground was not squashy.

After morning court everybody seemed to head out of the barn and across the way to the merchants. Specifically, to us. I'm not complaining, but I wouldn't have minded people browsing at other merchants or otherwise spreading out the busy-ness time-wise, so I could pay more attention to everybody.

Packing, it turned out, had been deficient. I grabbed the small bin that looks just like the one that holds hole punches, even though it's clear and you can see that it does not. Nor did I pack the rotary punch, or a mallet. So we may have lost a couple sales of buckled belts, since we had no way to put the holes in them. Although we did still sell a couple, to people who had or could borrow hole punches. We also forgot to put out the dog leashes and collars, which was a D'OH moment, as the Queen had said she wanted hounds at the event.
Note: a half-grown Borzoi has a wonderfully soft wavy/curly coat and is very good at the "nobody loves me" face.

By lunchtime the sun came out, and in the afternoon the breeze picked up. By mid-afternoon I'd taken down the walls we'd hung, because of the wind. The scaffolding/belt rack attacked Ron in the afternoon, because non-centered loading (intrinsic to how we have the actual belt-rack part of it), gravity, and wind pressure are like that. A nice customer helped stand it up and hold it while Ron made the short walk to the parking area for stakes from the truck.

I had a minor fail and bought some "butter" amber. Need to take it with me tomorrow night and see about getting it re-strung with a clasp, currently it's on two separate bits of fishing line.

Very tired when we got home, but happy.

Sunday Ron supervised Robin unpacking the truck, while I ran out for more small bins, to re-pack some of the things that are in big bins, which just get too heavy when full. We also retired our very first merchandise bin, which is about the size of a footlocker trunk, but maybe 2/3 as tall. I remember the days when it held *everything*, sniff sniff. It's still in good shape, just has that heavy-when-full problem, and it really isn't modular with the rest of the bins. Now we're down to two heights of Rubbermaid Roughneck bins.

I didn't update inventory with the new pouches before we left, but I did print out the list of pouches, so once I got everything else put out, I went through the new stuff, and got it on the list. Ron and I had the price list and sales tax cheat-sheets as PDFs on our phones, but I also need to remember to bring a paper copy of the price list, in case of low batteries, etc. And pack the hole punch and a mallet.

Haven't done the books from the event yet, but I need to get working on making more stuff. Some of the types of pouches were looking rather sparse by the end of the day...

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