Monday, June 19, 2006

Weekend in Janesville

This past weekend we went to Janesville, MN to demonstrate at their sesquicentennial. Katie, Takara, Norm and I went together in Katie’s big truck, pulling the two-horse trailer. This was Takara’s first event as blacksmith. Wally still has neck and back problems so he stayed home from this one. We decided to share Katie’s large tent and put a divider in it so we had a duplex for the weekend. Takara and Katie (with her kitchen) were on one end, Norm and I with the wheel and his shave horse were on the other.

Katie cooked for us and did a fine, fine job. We never went hungry! The set up was done so well that very few people actually realized that we were in one tent, with our demos on each end.

We arrived on Friday, set up before a huge rainstorm and started demonstrating on Saturday morning. We worked all day Saturday and again on Sunday and started tearing down at 5:00 Sunday, getting home about 10:30 that night. Oofta!

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Katie and Takara

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Norm working on a spoon

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Norm's hands

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Me and friend David

The nights were not too restful. First of all, on Friday night we had the thunder to keep us awake. Then, as we were almost asleep, a train went through. We didn’t know the tracks were so close; the train was extraordinarily loud and long and it sounded like the train was going through our tent! We were in a town park right next to the main highway going through town. I swear the trucks were louder than necessary, just on purpose.

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Our bedroom

There was a carnival in town to help celebrate the sesquicentennial and it ran until about 1:00 am. After the carnival closed, we had rowdy young kids, drunk (of course) running through the site, pounding on tents, trying to steal things and making loud, obscene noises. Some of the men stayed up or got up when the noises started. One young lady became extremely loud and foul mouthed when one of our men asked her politely to quiet down so people could sleep. The police station was less than half a block away, but the police (who had to be called) didn’t show up until after the men had followed the crowd out of the park.

We re-established friendships and made new friends. We have also been asked to demonstrate at Albert Lea in October for “Big Island.” Hundreds of school children come through to learn about historical crafts and skills. Both Norm and I will be paid to demonstrate, if we decide to go. We are considering that and are excited about being asked.

So, now we are home, slowly unpacking and starting to plan for the next event, Decorah, on the last weekend in July.

Have a beautiful day!

1 comment:

happyowl said...

I know that it was a lot of work but it sounds like so much fun!!!! I hope that you and Norm decide to go to the one in October. I would love to see the pictures from that!

Once the word blacksmith was used, my son was hooked. I now have to figure out if they have this type of thing in Canada. Working at the pioneer village isn't enough for him, I

Brightest blessings