FPG – Beltaine 2009

It has taken several weeks to absorb my last experience at FPG Beltaine 2009, but I am finally ready to share some of my experiences.

We left Wednesday night figuring that we would make several stops shopping, etc. on the way in and maybe catch a nap at the front gate of FPG. But as often happens, Dave and I were enjoying our conversations in the car and ended up not stopping at all. Thus, we ended up at the front gates in the wee, wee hours of the morning. The really humorous part was that the next day, people kept asking if we had heard of the people that came in the middle of the night. Giggles.

At this point, I have to apologize for my weakness in name recall, but I can assure I remember the people I have met and they have all made a tremendous impact. And while I reflect fondly on the faces, names are still elusive. So please kindly forgive my lapse of recall in the name only area.

After setting up camp, we met some truly wonderful neighbors, Dan and his lovely wife. Could not have asked for more charming or welcoming camping companions. Dan took Bear around to meet some of the wonderful guardians and staffers and Bear commented how much he enjoyed meeting everyone.

Here is the shower story part – Several of us were in the shower. Bless Bear because he decided to wander around nearby before taking his shower. Just as we got all soaped up, the water shuts off. Shock! Dismay! One lady had a full head of shampoo and I had…well…soap in parts that aren’t supposed to remain soaped for long periods of time. Thus, begins the hollering for husband Bear out the door (yeah, that was me). Bear finds Dan, our charming neighbor, who determines that the water issue is the result of (1) someone parking a golf cart on the hose; and (2) the pressure making the faucet spurt and someone else helping out by turning off the spigot. Anyway, thanks to Dan and Bear the flow of mystic waters returned and all soapy things were rinsed clean. Thanks, guys, for saving a damsel in soapy distress!

The first class we attend was the Rune class, which was extremely well presented and informative. Amber presented in a fashion that appealed to both novices and adepts, which is not as easy a task as one might think it is. Kudos to Amber and I hope to get to know her better in the future.

And then we were off to the Celtic Games. Lord Tomas has such a special manner of dealing with the participants, both young and old, so that everyone not only feels as if, but definitely is a part of the games. I would be remiss to not mention that the sassy directness of the Lady of the Games kept everything moving and humorous as well as safe for the participants.

Then, of course, later that day, the Mead Muse emerged in full fashion and Bear and I went around FPG toasting Beltaine with EVERYONE. I lost count at 14 campsites. Okay, I just stopped counting because, well, the Mead Muse is a hoot when imbibing in the meadness of things. We only made it through half of FPG this time, so we will have to finish the toasting trek at Samhain. Oh, darn! (Snickers)

The members of the Wytching Well were fabulous and oh so intuitive! It was a pleasure seeing Spelcastor and others from the South Florida CUUPS again. The Vikings, as always, were gracious and inviting.

Ah, yes and the Phoenix Tribe. Kisses to Gaelyn whom I am considering adopting as my special FPG pet. Each and every person at Phoenix were funny and welcoming and I will always remember their generosity of spirit. We had such a good time, they even sent us over to another tribe, who were a delight to meet. Unfortunately, I cannot remember the name of that tribe, but they were delightful to meet.

The only regret was missing the nighttime boccia ball. Which I sincerely hope we will be able to play next time with our new friends that were across the way from us.

We then headed to the Spiral Concert, which was amazing and actually inspired Bear and I to get up and dance a few jigs. Very talented group.

Early next morning, we served at the First Aid tent with a charming lady and I think the three of us are also now known as the First Aid hecklers. Half of FPG with a hangover and we are hawking the First Aid goods loudly and often. Somehow I was in charge of dispersing the prophylactics. Imagine that? Anyhow, I suddenly realized that I had become one of those cool old ladies who hands out condoms to the youngsters.

Then we were off to enjoy Margot Adler’s class. I do believe that she is the No. 1 cheerleader of the Goddess with her amazing ability to inspire others.

Then back off to the Celtic Games again. Boy, it was hot that day and the participants fought hard. I think I will be Lady of Mysts next time and bring a battery fan and a spray bottle of ice water to cool everyone off. Once again, we had an absolutely amazing and wonderful time at the games.

Later we travelled down to the fire circle, which was hot in oh so many ways. (More giggles. Wink, Wink, nudge, nudge, say no more). I think I need to put more padding in the seer mask/helm though.

We reunited with several more old friends and a very handsome rogue actually managed to get me to dance a round of the fire. By the end of the night, Bear was out there hotfooting like a young buck and although some more friends showed up a little later, but the Mead Muse had finally started petering out and we headed back to camp around 2:00 a.m.

It was so difficult leaving the next morning. The packing wasn’t bad, but the desire for it to not be over yet was very strong.

I want to thank everyone again – staff, guardians, entertainers, vendors, participants, and campers – for making this such a wonderful and inspiring visit.

Ellen a/k/a Mead Muse, Beltaine 2009

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