This past weekend was Kingdom Arts and Sciences. Ansteorra has a yearly (although the did do an extra one this year; I’m not sure if that will be the norm, or if they’ll scrap the idea of twice-yearly) competition to determine the premiere artisan of the kingdom. In addition, the top ten scoring entries (with a couple alternates) are asked to bring their work to Gulf War as pilgrims to compete against the opposing kingdom, Trimaris.
When I was first thinking about what I wanted to make for KAS, I thought about the knitted Sion reliquary that I had been planning on FOREVER. I wound off all the silk, dyed it, and knitted a test swatch… and realized that I’d have to knit ~1850 stitches A DAY for 30 days to get it finished. In addition to writing the documentation, moving, throwing the Poppet’s birthday party, and prepping for War. So, that was out.
Then Alden reminded me that we’d really already done all the research for his Achievement of Arms scroll (for which a blog post is in the works, I SWEAR) and that I could tweak the existing documentation that I’d written for a baronial A&S competition to suit Kingdom-level standards. I ended up re-writing it a few times, and entering the revamped docs into our local A&S competition, which is a week before KAS. That gives me time for last minute changes based on my scores.The nerve wracking thing about KAS is that you get there in the morning, and you set up your display, and then you wait. And wait. And WAIT. I passed some of the time working on my gold work cuffs (I’ll get them done sooner or later!) and some of it shadow judging a lovely piece of stained glass with my Laurel.
Once that was done, it was just about time for court. They called my Laurel Amata in and recognized the service she’s done our Kingdom with a Sable Crane (the service equivalent of a Thistle). And then they announced the Gulf War pilgrims, of which I was one, along with several member of Bryn Gwlad. So proud of my Barony!They asked us to check in and verify if we were going to War, and I was standing in line to do that when the Crown called up the Order of the Laurel. And then they called me.
To say that I was stunned is an understatement. I was glad to have Master Alden there to escort me into court because I was too shocked to move. I am so honored, and proud, and humbled, and surprised to be asked to join, that all my words desert me. Amata and I have started to talk about plans for vigils and elevations, and it all still feel like i’m planning it for someone else, because it hasn’t sunk in viscerally yet.
I’m pretty sure I’ll spend the next year or so trying to catch up to my own expectations of where I need to be to consider myself a Laurel. My first thought when they called my name was “…but, but I’m not DONE yet!” I have all of these plans, and projects, and skill refinements that I want to pursue, and I still want to work until I’ve reached those goals I set for myself. But until then, I’ll be doing my best to be worthy of the wreath.
Elen verch Phelip, Laurel Vigilant