Good King Hal and Lady Katherine celebrate the 600th posting on this blog by re-enacting the famous bow scene from "Titanic". As a special celebration Celine Dion was torpedoed on the Thames and sank with all hands. Good.
600 posts on this blog? Wow. Please feel free to send thanks and congratulations, that is if anyone actually ever reads this thing. I do wonder sometimes...
Anyway, enough of this self doubt nonsense, it was back to being Henry VIII at schools this week, with visits to two separate sites in Bristol. On the Tuesday it was a visit to a brand new school for me - Two Mile Hill Primary and arrived at about 8am to find a packed car park. The only way I could get in was not to double park but TRIPLE park, but I left a polite note on my dashboard explaining who I was, where I was and what the people could do if they wanted me to move (unprintable). There were a lot of stairs in this school, and a lot of locked doors, and it was just my luck that my big "treasure chest" that I carry a lot of my props in, decided today was the day to break it's handle, making it very difficult to carry. I had a feeling I was beginning to know how Sisyphus felt... It was a big group on this first day of the week - about 160 children and a mix of years 3 and 4. I have to be honest and say that the year 3 group in particular were quite hard work - not really badly behaved, just very fidgety, loud, and seemed like very immature year 3's. It made for a long-ish morning, but I felt by the end of the pre-lunch session that I had won them over and turned the corner. After a very convivial lunch in the staff room we were on for the afternoon session. As expected the stocks routine was loud and well received and the jousting tournament was pretty loud and popular as well. The final itself was closely fought but ended up with yet another win for the Gents team. So our score at the end of this day stood at:
GENTLEMEN 3 - 1 LADIES
Possibly the biggest lead that the Gents have had for a long time! I drove out of Bristol and made my way gently down the A37 and back to South Somerset and home. I was very tired when I got back.
It's funny isn't it - you wait all year for a school in Bristol, and then two come along at once. For the second show I was back at a school I last visited back in 2010. It was Elmlea Junior (not a cream substitute before you ask) which is located in the deliciously named Bristolian suburb of Westbury Upon Trym. As I recalled the area around the school was quite nice and leafy, it is a shame the weather was so dreadful as I arrived, with rain falling mostly downwards but with an occasional tendency to go sideways and spatter against the window. It was another mixed group of years 3 and 4 today, but this time about 180 of them, but this time all decked out in fantastic Tudor costumes, as were the teachers. The morning was partially truncated by a whole school assembly but it did mean I got a longer morning break, which I something I will never complain about. We had a great time on the quiz, even if one little chap did very blatantly cheat by altering all his answers at the end - apparently according to the teachers it wasn't the first time he had done this at school. I can see a career in politics looming for him. Lunch was a nice roast pork dinner, and then before we launched into the stocks and jousting, there was a brief and long overdue revival of my coat of arms designing session - but it seemed to go down very well. The stocks were loud and popular, but the jousting tournament was truly deafening, to the point that we had to stop it at one point, take some of the more sensitively eared children out and beg some of the girls to not scream quite so piercingly during the tournament. At times it sounded like Concord coming into land. In the final a Year 4 boys team was full of confidence and they took on a very shaky looking Year 3 girls team. But amazement above amazement, the ladies romped to a famous victory that sent the crowd into delirium! I posed for a few photos and then began loading stuff into the car. The score in the joust goes back to:
GENTLEMEN 3 - 2 LADIES
It is going to continue being close. After loading some of my boxes back in the car, I came back into the school to be told one of the little girls who had been in on the day was in hysterics. I immediately assumed she had been effected by the deafening screams and shouts during the joust, but apparently her tears were caused by the fact that my day was over and I was going home! Oh bless! Elmlea is a superb school and it was a delight to be back there. See you in two years folks.
This weekend is one of double delight for me - my lovely Shelley is coming down to stay and.... (insert fanfare here) ..... it is time for Chut Fest 2012 at Barrington Court! So the King will be there on both days, so come on down an say hello. And don't forget your jams, chutneys and marmalade's. Saints preserve us. (GEDDIT?)
Oh, and if anyone IS reading this and wants to send messages of congratulations on reaching 600 posts on the blog, please feel free to make comments, either on here or on Facebook.