Daytrip from Sapphire

Thursday, Jun. 09, 2005 – 5:33 p.m.

2005-06-09 5:33

(Written the last Saturday in May…)

I mentioned in an earlier post that I was going to go on field trip from an SCA event. It is Memorial Day weekend and I am sitting in the Jefferson Library in Charlottesville, VA. I am waiting for the “Iconography of Roses” lecture. Yesterday I packed up my truck with my camping stuff (rather than hauling the entire trailer up) and headed for Sapphire Joust outside of Richmond. I didn’t get on the road until 8pm which put me on site at 11:30pm. The event is in Amelia, VA and I showed up, checked in at troll, and headed over to the baronial encampment. Fortunately, I was able to drive pretty close (by driving across Sacred Stone encampment) and setup by the light of my headlights…. I should have left the truck running. By the time I got done setting up, the headlights were starting to dim and [sigh] the engine would not start. Hey! I brought my portable power/jumper unit so I hooked it up…but it had not been recharged so it didn’t have enough juice to do the job . Well, one of the other folk left me plug the unit into their car and charge for a while. After that, it was able to start the truck…. Of course, having left the truck off and let the battery rest also helped. Once I got the truck started, I let it run for about 45 minutes to recharge.

Ok, so I got to bed at about 3am…. Only to wake up at 6am. Oh well. I did have an alarm clock but I also set up my cell phone and PDA as alarms as well. Turns out that I had forgotten two things: fuel for the stove, and eating utensils. I could eat a cold breakfast and get fuel while off-site but eating cereal and milk is very difficult without a spoon. Fortunately other folk were up by then and I could get a dispo spoon from them. Just before I left, I found a propane cylinder in one of the bins. Cool.

The trip to Monticello was uneventful except for the spitting rain. By the time I got to the library at about 9:30am, things had cleared a bit. It appears that the lectures are popular… I ended up parking on the side of a driveway because there were no parking spaces left.

The lecture was REALLY interesting, at least to me. Dr Art Tucker was from Delaware State University and he talked about three significant points in the history of pictorial representations of roses: The Blue Bird Fresco at Knossos, Crete (very pre-period), the development of roses in art during the medieval period (he made an interesting observation about the troubadour poetry of the time and roses), and the whether R. centifolia actually existed throughout Roman times and the medieval period (he showed some evidence that it did). I asked him afterward about C.C.Hurst’s statements regarding R. centifolia being a relatively modern hybrid and he basically said that Hurst presented some theories but no real evidence. His methods are completely different from what anyone else did and has done since. Basically, Hurst got it wrong. Dr Tucker said he wrote a paper about how Hurst’s theories were unsupported (in the Heritage Rose Journal I think he said) so I need to find a copy of that. Good thing I work at a major research university with an outstanding library (and know folk who work in the library [grin]).

After the lecture, I had some lunch then headed for the open house at Tufton Farms. They have a very nice rose garden but some of their bushes are not labeled (at least not that I could find). The newer stuff does seemed to be labeled. I looked through their greenhouse/cold frame structures and found some very interesting cuttings growing…. However it turns out those were not for sale. Only the roses up front were being sold this year. Oh well. I ended up getting an Alister Stella Gray (noisette). I could have order stuff from their mail order sales (until June 5) but I was THERE and didn’t want to wait on shipping.

The trip back to Sapphire was fine. I ended up going by and looking at Anne’s new house in Richmond. Cute house. When I got back to site, I found that my rain-fly tarp had torn out in one of the corner grommets and the folk in camp took it down. Since it was not raining and didn’t look like it was going to rain, that was not a problem. Although I had planned to say through Monday, almost everyone in camp packed up on Sunday so that’s what I did. Oh, I did go shoot some archery.

The journey home was uneventful and I managed to get to spray the roses on Monday along with mowing the lawn.

Enough for now.

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