So, we had been planning this trip ever since PyrateCon back in April when everyone was asking, "So, you going to be in Ojai?" "Uh, sure." we would respond not knowing what lay in store.
First off, Ojai is simple a beautiful place and Lake Casitas was a really nifty backdrop for rapscallions of all sorts to congregate. We arrived to our room in Santa Paula (about 25 min. away from the event) at about 12:30 in the morning. Now, many of you like to camp at events. Me and me wife, Salma Gundy don't. We like the atmosphere. We like the folk. We like the vendors and shows. We don't like feeling like we was keelhauled before we get there. Anyhow, we landed and slept. We got there so late because of the Exotic Blend belly dance performance in Redlands, CA, which I will go into in me next posting.
Back to it. We took out time and met up with Greydog, Cantankerous Jan and Iron Sam Flint of the Orange Mermaid. We grabbed some grub and made way to the event site. We got a later start to avoid the rain and it was nice and calm...until we broke land. As soon as we hit, the rain came down in buckets. Since we are not made of sugar for we are Pyrates, we ventured forth (sans our plumes) into the great unknown known as The Ojai Pirate Faire!!!
We were ready. Salma in her Samija coat and lovely treasure chest and booty and me with me new waistcoat and captain's coat from Yordreem Creations (go see Black Scot's work) we were ready to sally forth.
The encampments were great looking and people were simple enjoying the day. Everyone seemed very friendly, which is always nice. There were many great looking Renaissance outfits...whoa...pump the brakes. Did he just type Renaissance??? Yeah, that really irritates me as a matter of fact. When I go to a Ren Faire I want to see people enjoying the Renaissance. When I go to Star Trek conventions I wanna see my Borg and Red Shirts. When I go to a Pirate Faire, guess what? Yeah. I wanna see Pirates. Sailor's trousers. Captain's Coats. Sashes and cocked hats. Even if they are not perfect period, I like the pirate theme. NOT any other era. The only exception would be Klingons. Klingons are great in any era. I will forgive any Klingons...KA' PLA!!!
Sorry. Geeked out for a moment.
Now, I think that many of the Ren outfits are magnificent and I respect many of the Rennies (I am one myself to a greater or lesser degree), but I don't want them in my Pirate affairs. They even did a battle? See, that is just wrong. Save for Klingons.
To move on. We made our way down to the battlefield where our mates of the Iron Brigade were at the canon. Met some great folks that are members of the Orange Mermaid/Iron Brigade and we had a great time. One bloke, Eric, bought some rum and the clerk failed to remove the anti-theft device. We got it off, but I'll be damned if it didn't take all of our might and know how and a sharp dagger.
We then attacked a mini galleon floating by firing back and mooning us. I actually got to shoot a flintlock pistol for the first time (Just never had the opportunity before; all swordwork until now). That was pretty cool and Salma Gundy fired the canon. WHAT? you say? Exactly. That is what I said after they fired that damn canon. WHAT??? Had that nice piratey ringin' in me ears. It was badass though. Bad-Ass. Needless to say, we are now in the market for some period flintlock pistols right now, so if you have any or know where we can get some nice ones at a good price (cheap, I am Scottish in origin), send me an e-mail.
We finally made our way up to the vendors and encampments. We saw many of our friends such as Tiger Lee (and Polite Doug), Jamaica Rose Barton who puts out No Quarter Given, Natasha and Kelly with their Skellramics wares (and me leather trays--buy one, no, buy two.) Gwyn who owns Unique Creations and various other vendors. We even ran into a friend we made in New Orleans, John, who owns Time Traveler Clothing. I will make a list at the end of this to let you know who has what with links.
We watched some bellydancing with the dancer Karma and show with an old friend of mine, Jennifer Mueller and her ensemble The Knotty Stitchers. We kicked around a bit more then went and too some pics with our friends Earnest Steve and Naughty Nellie (whoa Nellie), Greydog and Cantankerous Jan. By this time the faire was closing down.
We all decided to go grab a bite to eat on the "outside." One problem, we could not get out. We drove all over the place. It is one thing to be alone and not know where you are going but to be a following kind of dumbass (as I were) takes some talent.
We finally got out and grabbed a rather non thrilling and rare tri tip dinner at a local barbecue joint. We relaxed, laughed and were merry and then parted ways until our next encounter.
All in all it was a great trip. The vendors were nice and varied. The food merchants were really polite and in good spirits. Other events you get hustled through. These folks were very nice.
If'n ye have the chance to go this weekend I think ye should. Beautiful country, beautiful people and beautiful Klingons.
Unique Creations--Handmade necklace, brooches and various other jewelry. Also sells me leather pouches. Very reasonable prices.
Skellramics--Ceramic jugs, plates, goblets and many other cool items. Silver jewelry and oddments. They also sell me leather trays.
Time Traveler, Natural Fiber Clothing--great fitting shirts and breeches, skirts and such. Give John an e-mail with your needs. Pretty reasonable compared and comfortable t'boot
B. Coole Designs--Cloth pouches and attire and various items. Give B. Coole an e-mail. Tell her the Sage Lion sent ya.
Tiger Lee Photography--Tiger Lee has a great photo booth and Tiger is a talented picture taker. Old style looking pirate photos in costume and the works. Check him out.
No Quarter Given--THE quarterly journal for Pirates!! You want to know where anything Pirate is happening? You want info on Pirates? Their clothing? Their music? This site and this journal are the place to get your info. Jamaica Rose Barton and Michael MacLeod are great people as well.
Yordreem Creations--Black Scot makes great and comfortable coats, waistcoats, breeches and more as well as props. Tell him I sent ya.