belfebe (belfebe) wrote,
belfebe
belfebe

I did have fun, dammit!

So, as promised, here is my Sapphire recap:

We had an uneventful drive Saturday morning, and we managed to arrive early enough to allow us to set up our pavillion before any activities took place. That was really cool. Next, I got my butt to the Pearls meeting, which took about an hour, and hurried up to the fencing field hoping that I had not missed the tournament.

Fortunately for me the tourney had not started yet. It was just about to begin and geoffreyapclwyd had kindly brought over my fencing bag . . . except that when I opened said bag, we discovered to our collective horror that it was not my bag but Marcellus', who was marshalling that day.

(This is one of the disadvantages of having his and hers identical bags!)

Argh!

I did not have to go into conniptions, however, as Dante was nice enough to bump my fight to the last of the list so I could run back into the parking lot, collect my stuff from the truck, armor up, get inspected in a jiffy and get my arse on the list field. I am happy to report that I did all of the above and I that I returned just as they were calling my name.

"Phew!"

As for the tournament itself, it was a good one for me. I did win and lose my share of fights and, although I did not advance to the next round, I did manage to stay away from the bottom of the barrel. Yay me!

I must say, I have done better at other Sapphire Tourneys but,by the same token, I have done worse too. In fact, I could have made the bottom of the barrel or I could have won the tourney. It is all the same at this point. The most important thing is that I was there in spite of my Fear of Flying Tournaments[TM], I managed to overcome said fear, and got to apply in a practical manner the things that I have been practicing lately.

At this point, those things can be summarized as follow:
a) Distance
b) Timing
c) Bladework
d) Mind Game

The latter is the most important. Things to remember are:

  • Respect your opponent, for even if it is someone who just started playing, he or she can kill you if you underestimate her or him.
  • Do not fear your opponent. Even if you got stuck in the list with the Fencing God/ess of Death[TM], remember that you too can defeat said fighter if you play your cards right.
  • Take your blows. Better to be an honorable fighter than coming across as someone who made it through the finals by resorting to dishonorable means.
  • Do not lose your temper, even if your opponent seems to be sloughing off his or her blows. Remember, sometimes your perception of what happened may not be what really happened. Maybe you didn't really hit him. Maybe you did and she didn't feel it in the heat of the fight. You may want to discuss the issue in a friendly way. Most of the time, people are not trying to rhino-hide anything and do appreciate that you bring the issue to their attention. If they are rhino-hiding, see above.
  • Do not hold grudges. In the end, there will be other tournaments and holding grudges not only will get you nowhere, but will interfere with your ability to think.
  • Be mindful of those fighters you do not like. Try to forget who he or she is. Letting that dislike get the better of you is not productive. Brush it away from your mind, pretend you don't know him or her, and remember that he or she is just as anxious as you are.

    But enough of fencing musings, and on with the rest of the story.

    The finals of the tournament were between Seamus and Hadrurus. We were thrilled that two Pontoons made it to the finals. Moreover, Seamus is our last year's rapier Champ, while Hadrurus is the current one. It was really cool. In the end Hadrurus bested Seamus, winning the Ruby prize, and much fun was had by all.

    After the finals, we hurried up to the merchant's area, just in time to see Master T take Grace as his apprentice. It is wonderful what he and Missy Anne are doing with their apprentices. Such a fun bunch of nifty people.

    Court was long, but I must say quite charming. Seamus got his Sea Dragon, and Carlos his Award of Arms. It was priceless to see Carlos' face when his name was called into Court. He looked around to make sure that they were not calling someone else with the same name. Stunned, he finally made it out of his chair, while the rest of the household whispered "Remember to bow, Walrus!" and "Take your shirt out of your butt!" since the back of his shirt had gotten stuck into his trousers. When he finally made it in front of Their Majesties, he was told that it was not very often that someone under 18 got an Award of Arms.

    Needless to say, Carlos is still stunned.

    Carlos also fought on the tourney that Saturday, and we got a number of compliments from other fighters on his skill on the field, particularly for such a young man. Of course, ballistabob and I are quite proud of him.

    Other cool things that happened at Court were Brianna getting her Pearl, and bdeb his Pelican.

    Nifty.

    Dinner with the gang at Ponte Alto was loads of fun, although I did manage to fall into the "sober-trap," a hole in the ground that claimed a number of people besides me. I managed to twist both my ankles, which put a damper in my intentions to go visit other people.

    Sigh.

    Sunday morning we broke camp and drove back home, all of us in dire need of a nice comfy bed and a long hot shower, which we got at our arrival.

    All in all, a great event.

    And I did have fun, dammit!

    And amazingly enough, it did not kill me.

    Much.
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