08 October, 2003

Saturday. 27 September

Day 12 of Maryland Renaissance Festival, Romance Weekend

It seems packed, but it's only crowded by Market Stage, where the Singles games and message board are happening. The patrons are wonderful, the weather is hot and fine, and Martin stays up the entire time he's at the show, getting down at four-thirty to buy fish and chips. Oh, he breaks, and changes shirts, but never once untapes himself from his stilts. He is irritated because someone, another performer, has challenged his legitimacy, due to some "unRenaissance" details of his costuming and props. He wasn't wearing a badge, but had read his contract VERY carefully, and did not know he was supposed to.

He permits me to fuss over him, and feed him. He asks for very little. He ate eggs and a bagel this morning, saying that if he had a really good breakfast, he would be all right. One egg or two? Scrambled or fried? Toast or bagel? Butter or cream cheese? He considered each choice carefully. I give him an apple now, which he accepts.

He is so beautiful at rest, sitting peaceful and pensive. I cannot resist a few shots, wonder if I am catching on camera the expression I see before my eyes.

Ginny says I have the spirit of a 350 pound black woman. She demonstrates, mimicking me: "Come ovah heah, chile! Siddown, lemme git you some eggs. Yo' too skinny, c'mon have sumpin ta eat. You got sumpin on yo' face right there, lemme git that fo' you. Give you some love, got to c'mere an' let Mamma squeeze you all up!" I laugh, because it’s true. This woman’s name is Beulah. I have an icon.

After our stilt tour, Ginny asks me, Any highlights? No. There are none. Which is in itself very unusual. Once in awhile, it is work, I suppose. We spot Martin working in the streets. He is, to use his word, brilliant. Lurk is quite a character, and I am not the only one amazed.

When we finish at four-thirty, I scurry. Martin, who has streamlined everything for ease of travel, is finished his fish by the time Garrett and I are packed up. I know John will be joining the family later, and can't really worry about dinner, so I trust that Hawk, who is home, will find something to feed my friends, as I have a Murder Mystery to do.

After a quick shower, I head up to the Chesapeake Arts Center for a performance of a new show, An Award Winning Murder, which we rehearsed twice and should be fine on, but I am frantic and jittery and cannot calm down. The audience enjoys us, but CJ and I felt the whole cast was scattered and slightly off.

Afterwards, I go for one beer, and lean against Dan, who is kind and accommodates my need for touch. Food takes a long time coming, and I am weary and headed for home before it arrives. Fortunately, I had not ordered any. I look forward to an evening wrapped in big trucker arms, ensconced in the depths of a warm waterbed. I do not get it.

I haven't written anything since, I don't know, Wednedsday, I guess, so it isn't really a huge surprise that I get kept awake by a poem that won't go away. Combined with the jitters that I had so badly I was shaking, which haven't entirely disappated, I am exhausted and unable to sleep. I lie still, letting the poem soak in, figuring I'll write it down in the morning. Pogo, the elderly dog, barks, giving me an excuse to get up and write the poem down. She gives me so many excuses to get up all night that I don't really settle down until 5:30, waking again at 7:15 to prepare breakfast for a houseful.

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