15 October 2009

Martin's Station

As is all too frequently the case, dear reader, I begin this entry by begging for your indulgence for the length betwixt posts.

Last weekend, the Fuzzys packed up their 18th century belongings and headed west to the very extreme of the tail of Virginia where Martin's Station is located. This was their second major event of the year (the prior in May), not as popular as that spring event but perhaps more enjoyable for the relative lack of people present. Go ahead, I know you're thinking it, just say it, "He's such a curmudgeon."

This was Mrs. Fuzzy's first-ever 18th century re-enactment as a participant. She did yeoman duty on the wood fire and complained not of the damp and gray skies which hung barely above our heads. Our arrival was timely; we were still erecting the French Military canvas tent that was our temporary home when the first downpour struck. Friday night brought a spectacular lightning storm and lashings of rain; the fine tent withstood all that Nature hurled.

Saturday dawned (more or less - the clouds so dense that it was impossible to determine whether the sun had indeed risen) with a soaked ground - and what had been our campfire. There seemed little hope of rekindling those water logged faggots so we sauntered down to the main camp and treated ourselves to a morning repast at Govan's Coffee House, sitting at a table under a canvas shelter. There we encountered our old friends, Capt. Titus and the famed frontier artist, H. David Wright also seeking a dry spot and warm companionship.

Mercifully there was no precipitation during the day on Saturday although the clouds seemed to hang just above the blockhouse roof peak. We visited with friends, Mr. Ross and Mr. Delp as well as the site's Senior Ranger Billy Heck, aka Capt. Martin. One of the greatest pleasures of these events is the fellowship and The Station is never shorted anyone in that category. We also performed a perfunctory scout at a couple of the sutler's tents.

Sunday's light and clouds were carbon copies of the prior day. The weather had been quite dynamic during the wee hours of the morn, ranging from a fairly dense fog to crystal clear but the day was dense and colorless. There was celebration to mark an important historical event that morning, however - Mr. Fuzzy had a landmark birthday. In recognition thereof, Mrs. Fuzzy presented him with a spectacular hunter's frock, perfectly pieced and carefully constructed by Julie Hudson of Weeping Heart Trading.

Julie had shown it to the Fuzzys at the CLA meeting in August and it fit Mr. Fuzzy as if custom tailored for him. It was a perfect copy from a 1777 illustration of a colonial rifleman and it was sooo beautiful as well (why can't modern mens fashions possess such a sense of style?) but Mr. Fuzzy had spent most of his allowance already and therefore had respectfully declined to purchase it. Unbeknown to him, Mrs. Fuzzy had purchased it for his birthday gift. In a bit of Finnish humor, Mrs. Fuzzy had given Mr. Fuzzy bag stuffed with something soft to use for a pillow whilst camping - so his head had rested upon the frock for the previous two nights.

Sunday morning flew past and it was time to strike camp and return to Stratheden Farm. It was clear that the same storm which bedeviled us at Martin's Station has also struck the Farm. The winds must have been prodigious as few walnuts were left on their branches. Tuesday was a bit of summer with a high temperature in the mid-70s but yet another storm has struck and Wednesday's high was 44F at 7:00 a.m. The forecast is for the possibility of snow on Saturday and Sunday.

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