Fields of gold – my life with the SCA

Wow I cant believe how long it has been since I graced these pages. But never fear fair gentle I come baring glad tidings. I spend the last weekend at the wonderous event of Fields of Gold. This is an SCA event that goes over a weekend. There is fighting, arts and sciences, feasting and best of all new friends to be made. Anyone who hasn't been to their local SCA, run don't walk to your nearest one! This isn't like a medieval fare. Its not a bunch of nerds in their parents basement (although we do play games at the parents house after lol). No, this is a group of infinitely intelligent, welcoming and wonderous people who all like to play. We tell our children that play is integral to them developing as wonderful human beings, then at some point we decide that's enough of that its time to stop learning and be boring...then wonder why we are all sad and bored.
The Lists where the combatants fight in armour

Our King and Queen host court

My own journey into the SCA was kind of an accidental one. I had always hear rumours of a friend of  a friend who camps out in a field in full medieval style but not knowing anyone personally I never attended an event. Then earlier this year I wanted to get back into archery, I needed to meet new people and as an adult this is really hard when you aren't drunk!  So instead of a bar I went to a local archery club, I was told no there wasn't a beginners session that day and had to leave feeling very embarrassed. I checked their website and found that the SCA also accepted new comers to the club so the next week I ventured down to see them. I was instantly welcomed with open arms. I have never felt so welcomed by strangers, they taught me, coached me and even acted as a human quiver and stook next to me and held my arrows.
Each week I felt more and more like this random assortment of people was where I belonged. There were young women, young men, older women and older men, fathers, brothers and mothers. Two months later I attended my first event which happened to be their biggest event of the year. Thousands of people came from all over Australia to this event. Unlike a renaissance fare this was aimed to be as authentic as possible. The gowns were all hand stitched, the mens hose were held up with Viking wraps and the tents were lovingly hand made. Better yet they were totally accepting of newcomers and our blue dome tents.
Me happy my tent survived the night

Sadly just two weeks late we lost a much loved member who was the most loving and welcoming of the group. I cried for 3 days straight for a man I had only known for such a short time. These beautiful people took me under their wing and taught me all they had to know. We held a memorial in full garb at the club and shot in his honour.

Skip ahead to now, nearly 10month since I joined and I learn every single week. Last month it was a conversation about mustard and the crusades with our Baron and Baroness. Last week it was a conversation about university and how to make arrows.

This weekend we went to the second largest event for our area, Fields of Gold, or FoG. I met even more friends, on the first day we all pitched in to set up tents, any able bodied person grabbed a mallet and put up a Viking tent or a pavilion for shade or a flag on the lists. I hitched my gown into my belt and jumped fences to retrieve arrows for the ladies who couldn't. We bowed and curtseyed to the King and Queen. I was graced to be named part of the Archery Guard. If you have never seen a person be knighted I really recommend it, there were many tears shed by all at the honor this deserved for service. Then at night we all grabbed our goblets and some cider and watched the distant hills where a bushfire burned slightly too close for comfort and discussed how many versus of the SCA birthday song we could get too (we established there are 9) for a young man turning 20 that evening. I honestly cant think of a better way to spend my weekend and as I trudged home, dirty and sore, I thought back to how lucky I am to have found this group.

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