Monday, October 13, 2008

North Country Muster

We managed to survive our "School of the Renaissance Soldier: North Country Muster" on the first weekend of October. Unfortunately it also happened to be the first weekend of Autumn/Winter and rained pretty much throughout the weekend. Ah, authentic Northern European Weather to go with our event! Luckily it wasn't too cold, just very, very wet.

We didn't manage to attract huge numbers of new folks, but we did attract a few new recruits and bring back a few others, so we count this as a success. I believe we managed to muster somewhere in the neighborhood of 35 hardy individuals, willing to brave the elements in order to enjoy Life in the Sixteenth Century. Good thing we had lots of wool to wear.

For my own part, I was pretty pleased with the results. We mustered a total of 8 horse, of whom 6 were able to do all of the crazy Cavalry things that I love to inflict upon people (and horses). Not only did we get to practice our various drills such as wheels, column-to-line, etc., but we also for the first time under my command practiced "Dismounted" tactics. Meaning that we had four of the Horse armed with firearms who dismounted, handed the lead to their designated horse-holder, and went forth on foot to distract and annoy the Foote with our fire. Most enjoyable, especially as the Shotte (the musketeers) had just fired off their last charges, and were ready to head back to camp for more ammunition. Happy were we when we made this discovery! I wondered why they weren't shooting back...

Did I mention that it was wet? Most of the Horse (and the horses) were intelligent enough to billet in the barn. Your Rittmeister of Horse however was stubbornly insistent upon setting up canvas and living well... and damp. Setting up in the rain, taking down in the rain, then getting the wonderful chore of drying out LOTS of canvas in our garage. Thankfully we have a huge garage, and lots of poles to drape things from, as I believe we ended up with most of the tent-roofs to dry out. But dry they did, and all are now safely put away, with not a spot of mildew on them.

As always we ate well, thanks to our Victualer Cindy Madsen. Greater thanks cannot be transmitted, as a full belly makes the worst conditions tolerable. And the conditions weren't all that bad, so the wonderful (and plentiful) food made it all that much more fun. I think I always gain weight on these outings, even though I labour from dawn to dusk. Strange.

So as always, we had a wonderful (of soggy) time, the horses (as always) took a day to get used to the idea of what we were doing, and started to really click just about as it was time to pack up and leave. Alas. One of these days we'll figure out that we need THREE days of such training to get the horses' heads into the proper frame of mind. Next time.

Speaking of which, next time should be in April, at the Actions of the Lowe Countries in Sacramento. Just enough time to get everything cleaned up, dried out, and rust free. Maybe a few more recruits crazy enough to join us in our wild adventures, too.



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