The musings of a juggling mother

Rants & raves about life as a woman today, juggling work, home, kids, family, life the universe & everything.

© Mrs Aginoth. The right of Mrs Aginoth to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted in accordance with sections 77 and 78 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents act 1988

Monday, July 10, 2006

Ancient Anglesey

We spent the weeked re-enacting at Beaumaris Castle in Anglesey. It was a good event - although a long way to go (about a 6 hour drive) so we left home on Friday morning & stayed an extra night, so we could drive home again today.

Angelsey is a fascinating place. Well, Wales as a whole is pretty good for re-enactors, or anyone interested in history. It was barely bombed during the war, so still has much of it's historical buildings standing, although mostly in ruins. Wales also has so very many castles, as it was conquered during the real castle building time, so they were slammed up all over the place as tracts of land were handed out to English (read French) nobles, who then had to subdue the local populous - usually by foce of arms.

Of course, Wales has a glorious history of it's own, long before the English turned up & annexed them. The famous English longbow was welsh (made from welsh trees, by welshmen, and used by welsh archers for most of the early medieval period). It's almost certain the welsh reached America long before Columbus, Cabot or even Erikson, but the Welsh prince Madoc several centuries earlier. It was also the home to the Druids - the religious/cultural order in Britain before the Romans came along. The druids sound like a fantastic order from the little we know (don't mistake the modern druids who caper around stonehenge once a year with the real, ancient druids who trained for 21 years before being allowed to be the lowest member of the order!). Certainly Britain was a nicer society under them than under the Romans. They were also one of the very few religious orders deliberately & sytematically wiped out by the Romans - we still don't know why. They were pushed further & further west, making their last stand on the island of anglesey, before being killed to a man.

But does anglesey capitalise on this history? Not at all. I did not see a single mention of the druids while there, and very little about their history. At least 95% of the visitors to the castle over the weekend were not welsh, and both times that we have re-enacted in Anglesey we have had the distinct impression that the locals were not very impressed with us being there!

Anyway, we had fun. The weather held out on Saturday, but then it remembered we were in Anglesey, so whipped up a howling gale & storm all night. LMD spent most of the time whinging, and every time I woke up, all I could hear was banging as other group members desperately tried to hammer their tent peg back in:-) Fortunately, Agie did a good job with ours, and we were fine, but one tent came down completely, and a few looked a lot worse for wear on sunday morning. The rain hung around most of Sunday, which put a bit of a downer on the event. Paired with the fact that the world cup final was on too, there were not many publc around:-( Still, there were enough to listen to my stories both days, and to buy a few roseries, which menat we made enough to cover our food for the weekend (not to cover the petrol costs or anything, but.....) Aggie screwed up the soap this weekend, so we don't have any more to bring home thankfully:-) add in the fact that the member of the group who didn't like children has decided to leave, we're feeling pretty happy with the way this new group is going. It's always hard when you start a new group as we try to find the right niche - especially as Aggie doesn't really fight any more, but I'm getting a good vibe about this one:-)

We've got next weekend off, so maybe I'll do some gardening or something.

or maybe I'll just sew some new re-enactment clothes for the kids:-)


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