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A place for the geek in all of us.
Why I ventured to the mutton and mead festival Montague, massachusetts.
Come hell or high water as they say, I was bound and determined to make it to the Mutton and Mead festival in Montague, Massachusetts on Sunday. Well, I made it and I was not disappointed. I go to get back to my historical/fantastical needs. I'm a living historian, and also a mother of four-so there are limited times to indulge myself in my history fix. I of course, write and publish but Ren fair time is the best concoction for my imagination. It gives me the fix that I need to keep going especially when working on copy that is, shall we say-less than entertaining at times?
I've been to several fairs in my time, and loved every minute of them. This fair in particular was interesting because it is a different horse altogether. In fact, they base the fair on common folk, and their lives. Of course, Robin Hood is a very interesting common person to attach the fair too, so they do. Going to Ren fairs are the perfect way to experience lighthearted, bawdiness with activities to keep the children indulged.
mead-when you need it
Yes,the mead here is heady. At the fair there is a long line for it, and you have to wear a lime green band saying you can drink at the fair. That was different, waiving a flag to say you are allowed to partake. No matter, it's the line that takes forever. For $5.00 you get a dixie cup. Just a little disappointing, and perhaps something that might be changed in the future.
Mead is an elixir that has an illustrious history, going back to the vikings of yesteryear. Drink it from a horn, or a dixie cup no matter, it's the liquor that saves your sanity. I had to drive, so unfortunately I vicariously lived the drink through a friend who was able to imbibe.
When you wish it were an actual joust
At the end of the day, i was inspired for book three-nameless, and set in the 1940s.
If you didn't know this, I am a published author, and freelance writer.
I've published several books, Now, I am getting back to a place that is calling-1940s. The book is based largely on the Ardennes Offensive, bloody and soul saddening- thousands died trying to break through dragons teeth that were not going anywhere save to stamp out the allied offensive. As history tells, the allies were able to break through, my story follows them from Bastogne, to Dachau. There is time travel, there has to be. Oh and a smite of Romanian witch, and Aryan occultism. Hope to have it completed by the middle of next month.
For more writing by colette visit #historysmistress.wordpress.com
It is free to walk to the Rock House Reservation, through the woods and to the site called Balance Rock. The formation is 30 feet high, and was a shelter for Native Americans, and travellers in centuries past. A farm was built around the rock house at one point, in the 18th century and that lasted for 125 years.
In the 19th century a rail was built near the property,and a descendent of the colonial owners built himself a little cabin there and even a pond. Today, visitors hike to the cabin, amid rocks and grass to see the view from the top. It is a beautiful place full of history.
Where is it?
More than 3 miles of trails and woods roads. Moderate hiking, strenuous in places.
When to Visit
Year-round, daily, sunrise to sunset. Allow a minimum of 1½ hours.
Portable toilet (open seasonally) and small trailside museum (nature center) overlooking Carter Pond.
When Shakers came to Massachusetts in the late 1700's they came to evangelize. The group, also known as The United Society of Believers in Christ's Second Coming were passionate about what they believed. They were so passionate that when the spirit moved them, they shook, jumped, mumbled, and displayed signs of the "spirit" outwardly.
One afternoon I was at a neighbor’s house when two young women attired in Shaker costumes appeared at the rear door. They said the Shakers always lived according to their profession, were honest and upright, but that they did not wish to live a celibate life any longer. A strange sensation seemed to creep over me, and something like a voice said, “Why listen to them? Go to the Shakers. See for yourself who and what they are.”
They were inspired to proclaim their world to a revolutionary America. Shakers had requirements though including celibacy. The first ceremonies, led with Mother Ann and her eight followers were chaotic. Some even described them as emotional. Imagine, a group of people following their own drum. This movement reached it's height in the 1820s throughout the 1860s. Women and men lived traditionally, even for the time but believed in equality of the sexes. The goal in labor was perfection.
Want to be a Shaker?
You can't there are three remaining members that live in a small group in Maine. They closed their membership forever.
Head out for Adventure and visit the Shaker Historic Trial that the NPS has put together!
Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village -- New Gloucester, Maine
Alfred Shaker Historic District -- Alfred, Maine
Enfield Shaker Historic District -- Enfield, New Hampshire
Canterbury Shaker Village -- Canterbury, New Hampshire
Harvard Shaker Village Historic District -- Harvard, Massachusetts
Shirley Shaker Village -- Shirley, Massachusetts
Hancock Shaker Village -- Pittsfield, Massachusetts
Tyringham Shaker Settlement Historic District -- Tyringham, Massachusetts
Enfield Shakers Historic District -- Enfield, Connecticut
Mount Lebanon Shaker Society -- New Lebanon, New York
Watervliet Shaker Historic District -- Albany, New York
North Union Shaker Site -- Cleveland, Ohio
Whitewater Shaker Settlement -- New Haven, Ohio
South Union Shakertown Historic District -- South Union, Kentucky
Shakertown at Pleasant Hill Historic District -- Harrodsburg, KY
Joseph Allen Skinner's name is everywhere in Western Massachusetts. Besides the museum operated now by Mount Holyoke College, there is a J.A. Skinner State Park, and the Wisteriahurst museum (the home of the Skinner family in Holyoke, Ma).
Skinner was born in Williamsburg, Massachusetts. His family was in the silk business, Joseph had been born into it. His father William had been raised in London and was trained in silk dying. He started a company, called Unquomonk Silk Company, located on the Mill river. Flooding actually destroyed the original home of the silk company, however Holyoke gave Skinner a new opportunity for his Silk company.
Joseph went into the family business, and traveled the world like most wealthy men of his age. While traveling, he found unusual items, and collected them. The Joseph A. Skinner museum has at least 10.
This is a blog dedicated to travel, nerdy lifestyles, weird things and adventure. Come along with Colette to find something to tickle your fancy.