A cold day at the Scottish Fair

mia_mcdavid and I spent Saturday with Colgaffneyis at the Minnesota Scottish Fair & Highland Games. It was my 60th birthday. We arrived the afternoon before to help set up the organization’s camp and camped out there ourselves that night. It was cold.

Saturday’s weather was authentically Scottish: Cold and rainy. I think the overall turnout for the fair was low, but we got a lot of traffic over at Colgaffneyis corner. Having two fires going in the camp, one for the kitchen and one for fabric arts, was a big attraction. The weather was a problem, but we did everything we were supposed to do. We had some pike demonstrations, dancing, and fabric arts. We also fired a mortar at the opening and the close of the fair, and for the noon parade.

I was part of the crew for the noon firing, being responsible for the “worm” and the “prick“. In the old days the names of tools would sometimes be transferred to their operators. This made me think of Psalm 22:6. Better that than the alternative :-)>

After firing the mortar vitamin_g_prime and I carried it back to our camp. I rested for a couple minutes (the mortar weighs 80 lbs./ 36 kg.) and then went back to the parade. Colgaffneyis contingent had already formed up at the front, so I went down the line and joined the group from Clan Davidson.

Once again we had a wool waulking in the afternoon. This time haddayr was our ban dhuan (“song woman”). She was great! Despite the weather, we had a good crowd and it went well. mia_mcdavid has been organizing these for several years now and her efforts are being noticed.

Counting Mia herself, there were four women in the camp wearing arisaids that she had woven. She also had a piece of tartan left over from an arisaid that woven for another member and the Ulster Red plaid she wove for me. So we got them all together for a group picture in front of our tent:

Mia was also wearing the bonnet she had knitted, dyed, and felted.

Sunday was sunny and clear, the kind of weather we had wanted for the fair. We had come home with a great file of wet fabric, which had to be dried. Mia laid out some in our living room and basement, and I spread the rest out on the back porch and in the front and back yards. I think it came to about 500 square feet each of canvas and wool. I also took care of the messier task of getting the rust off of our tent stakes and some of my tools that had been caught in the rain.

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