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I've been asked by several people if I'm going to do my customary trip writeup...which, I was considering not doing, but enough people have asked that I think maybe it might actually get read!

Since I was gone a grand total of seven days, I'm going to condense a lot...because nobody needs to hear about that rest stop in Ohio or the fifth time I got us lost looking for Chick-Fil-A. We'll just talk about the fun stuff, shall we?

Wednesday, June 23

My phone rings at work. Unfortunately, I have no bars, and have to call back on the land line. It's Mike, and he begins the conversation, "Don't freak out." When that's the case, you know it's going to be good. And actually, what came next was a very good suggestion. He wanted to leave that night instead of the next morning, and drive all night to Williamsburg. He had several arguments in favor, and I didn't fight it. So long story short, I drove through rainstorms until about 2 a.m., then took my pill, and passed out with Mike behind the wheel.

You know how when you're "sleeping" in a car, you really usually are less sleeping and more just zoning out? And you're often aware of speed changes and turns and such? Yeah...not me. I took my Trazodone and I was out cold for four hours. I stirred for about half an hour at 6 a.m. and then fell back asleep until just after nine. Apparently, I slept through all of D.C. morning commute traffic, several historical markers being pointed out to me, and a few bobbles across rumble strips. That's...pretty impressive. By the time I woke up for real, we were almost there.

Thursday, June 24

We got to the Governor's Inn around 10 in the morning, which was about six hours before their check-in time began. I texted Katherine that we had arrived, just as she and Megan walked around the corner next to the car. So I popped out and waved them down, and it was really nice, if a bit odd, to finally be meeting people that I've known for so long online! Years, in some cases! Anyway, they let us check in early, and we went and took a nap. The room was cold, and it was glorious. Then we sewed. Then Tyler arrived, there was a flurry of gifts and other items exchanged, and then we retired for the night.

Friday, June 25

Somewhere along the line, Mike got us registered with the Von Donop regiment, which meant that we got passes for all the buildings and museums in the historic area, and that we had to go register. "It won't be far," the boys said, after we had partaken of the hotel's continental breakfast and dressed for the day. "We'll just walk down and register.

"Not far," turned out to be a mile, and by the end of it my feet were having some issues. It didn't seem to bad then, but as the weekend progressed the relationship between my feet and my shoes deteriorated rapidly. At this point it still wasn't much to write home about, though, so after we signed a few forms and picked up our papers, we set off into the historic area to see the sights. We also met up with Katherine & Megan not too long after.

Following the Army

Friday was Taking the Town, so at about noon the advance guard marched in and Lt. Tarleton made a speech at the capitol. There was a mixture of booing and "God save the King!" from the crowd, and the British colors were raised. As the guard marched back toward the courthouse green, Mike was stopped by a soldier who accused him of deserting--he showed his papers and was let pass, since he was to rendezvous with the Captain of the Von Donop regiment...whenever said Captain made an appearance.

The Provost Guard marched in at three, with civilians following. Tyler and I both were having foot troubles by then, so we elected to let Mike do all the walking while we watched.

Not marching in with the army.

While sitting there, a staff member of CW approached me, asked if I was all right, told me to drink lots of water, and fanned me with a map. I suppose I am looking a little rosy in that picture, but I wasn't actually suffering from the heat too badly at all. Which, for me, is a big deal!

Not too long after I think we retreated for the day (as in, back to the hotel). I believe we arranged to meet Gwendolyn for dinner, and went to a local pub to eat. The boys donned their banyans for the occasion, and afterwards we took a walk. We took photos in front of the palace, chased fireflies, and enjoyed slightly cooler temperatures. Emphasis on "slightly."

Banyans at the Palace.

Saturday, June 26

Saturday, Mike met up with the Captain of the regiment, and Tyler and I spent the day mostly at liberty. My feet were in fairly serious pain. Tyler kept saying his were "fine." He limped. I was basically shuffling with little baby half-steps at some points. We had gone for band-aids and moleskin, but for me, the damage was already done. It didn't keep us from going out for the day, though!

The highlight of Saturday afternoon was serving the officers' mess. Twelve officers dined in style under a huge canopy while a parade of dishes flurried around them. Thirty dishes in three courses, all told. The whole affair was completely different than anything I've ever done, or anything I'll probably do in the future...except for UTR next year, of course.

Tyler serving Red and Black Drum

Forcemeat balls & forced cucumbers. Oh, and Katie and Mike.

Oh, and I've nearly forgotten! Throughout all of this, anyone in costume could be stopped and searched at any of the barricades in town. The first time Tyler and I tried to cross one, we both showed our papers; the soldiers left me pretty much alone apart from asking if I was carrying any bags or pockets with me, but Tyler's wallet was searched and he was patted down by another soldier who joined his fellows to see what the disturbance was.

A second time, we were drawn aside by two soldiers from another barricade, who asked us for our papers. We showed them, but the soldiers insisted they had heard rumor of forged papers. "We're here to meet with our friend, who is serving the captain of the Von Donop regiment," we motioned in the vague direction of the Hessians--behind and a bit to our right.

"Are you familiar with anyone in that regiment?" one of the soldiers asked.

"No sir, we have not met them yet," we told him. "We have yet to meet with our friend, who we hope will be able to acquaint us with them."

"We will need someone to vouch for you," we were told. One turned to his friend and asked, "Why don't you ask someone from that regiment if they know these people?"

His compatriot paused. "...I don't speak German."

They looked at each other. "...Neither do I."

Pause. "Do you know anyone else here who may vouch for you?" they tried again.

They were from the 33rd, so I tried a little name-dropping. "No one of the soldiers, but Sarah who is traveling with the 33rd of foot is an acquaintance of mine."

They had NO idea what to do with that, so one turned to the other and said, "Let's take them to the acting Corporal and make him make a decision." So they walked us a few yards over and the gentleman in question came out to meet us. We handed over our papers and he gave them a perfunctory glance, asking what the problem was.

"We have heard tell of forged papers," the one soldier began, but he was cut off.

"I am sure these are legitimate," the acting Corporal told him.

"They say they are with the Von Donop regiment, but I know no Von Donop," said one.

He gave the man a look. "You should," he told him. "We've been serving with them since 1776!"

(BAHAHAHAHAHAHA) That won him a grin and a shrug, but he continued. "In addition I know a Miss Katie Jacobs," (what?!) "and they may pass."

...Well then!

Later I saw him, after serving the officers' mess, and he grinned "Did you see how I vouched for you, there?" I thanked him, since he undoubtedly could have made things much more difficult for us if he had decided to!

Saturday, I also got to meet my friend Kelly in person. I've known her on Facebook for a while now, but we finally got to talk for real!

Meeting friends.

Sunday, June 28

Sunday was supposed to have a heat index of about 110, so we decided maybe some air conditioning would be good to include in our daily activities. That in mind, we did some museum stuff in the morning, up until we left to go help with the officers' mess again. About he time I walked into the tent, the Ensign was sitting the head cook (in tears) down in the shade and forbidding her to move from that spot and telling her everything would be taken care of. I put myself in charge of shoving serving utensils into dishes as she listed them off, which was something I couldn't really screw up too badly. Everything went just fine, though there were a couple people who obviously suffered from the heat over the course of the meal. They caught it early and downed some water & Gatorade, though, so nobody had to be carted off or anything.

Despite wearing the wool outfit on Sunday, I found myself almost horrifyingly comfortable. In fact, for the whole weekend, my overwhelming memory isn't "my goodness it was so hot," it's more like "Man, my face sweats a lot when it's over 90 degrees out." The linen and wool on my body really did a lot to absorb and wick away sweat...so while my linens were extremely dubious by the end of it all, I stayed very comfortable.

Self-timer FTW!

Gwendolyn got off work early on Sunday, so she came out to join us right about the time Mike & Tyler decided they were done for the day...but that meant she and I got some together-time in the afternoon before it was time to go get ready for our fancy dinner with friends that evening.

So the fancy dinner: Ten reenactors/costumers at the King's Arms in their best outfits, keeping cool and having fun.

Fancy gentlemen.

There's quite the air of England in this photo...

That's right, boys, stay hydrated!


I don't even know how to interpret this face.

I had switched to unobnoxious normal shoes for daytime because of blister problems, but decided I could do one more evening in my repros without too much trouble. Not a good idea. I spent all of dinner with no shoes on (nice) and it was like fire putting them back on after the meal (not nice). I didn't even get halfway back to the car before I had to take the shoes off, only to find out that my big toes had cracked and bled through four band-aids and both socks. Stellar! So I walked back in stockings. Gingerly.

Monday, we decided we probably didn't have enough pictures of us in our clothes, so we took some together in the morning before splitting off down gender lines to spend some quality time together in the one-on-one format.

And as far as UTR goes, that's the end!
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