guenievre: (reading)
So the Baronial meeting was last night, and [livejournal.com profile] thlmakai's bid was chosen. Yay! This means I'm cooking feast ::wibble:: The Kberg event (Battle of the Oranges!) is also a go, per Monday's meeting, which means I have 2 feasts coming up next spring. So there will be lots of food geeking between now and then. Anyway, I don't know how many people want to read all that, vs. how many people want to be pleasantly surprised by their dinners at each event. SO... I'm setting up filters. If you'd like in to 1 or both filters, and/or want to come play in the kitchen (especially if you want to come play in the kitchen, as if you have a clue what's going on before you get there we'll both have more fun) drop me a line - I'll be posting the first bit later today.
guenievre: (new heraldry)
So somehow I managed not to update this thing since before Crown. I am an awful, awful journaler. The problem, of course, being I don't write and then I psych myself out with having too much to talk about. I'm not going to try to catch up - everyone else has written about things like Crown already. (Which I was overwhelmed by, really - I'm absolutely astounded/thrilled b/c my friends made me a dress, when mine didn't get done, and that my husband was willing to go out and fight for me, and even win one!).

But on the astounding front, that's not the biggest thing that's happened to me this last month. You see, I wasn't even planning on GOING to University. But as it turned out, [livejournal.com profile] kfitzwarin couldn't go to Sapphire, and we desperately needed a break that didn't involve camping, so we ended up deciding to do Uni instead of Sapphire.

I barely went to the event - as in, we got to site late because of traffic, went to the Oldcastle class (minus garb, because we thought it was going to be armored and... anyway), then started dithering about whether to put on armor or garb for the afternoon. Finally decided to go take classes, so went to get dressed in the bathroom. Now, this oufit takes 20 minutes from mundanes-to-done, even without the fake hair. Especially without the fake hair, as mine JUST BARELY is long enough for that sort of braid.Anyway, I end up talking to like 20 zillion people in the ladies room while fixing my hair, including my dear laurel, who I didn't realize I was making Very Nervous. See, I wasn't even really PLANNING on going to court...was just going to get dressed now and then go to lunch, and come back for class. In fact, I was fairly sure this was the plan...

So we ([livejournal.com profile] soucyn, [livejournal.com profile] catwhowalked, [livejournal.com profile] fenrir1323, [livejournal.com profile] kfitzwarin and I) start walking over to court. Which confused me, but it's a university, so I figured it was some laurel thing, or what not. The auditorium was VERY hot, and there was no real way to find a seat discreetly and things had already started. So I gave up on court and figured I'd wait in the hall till K was done with whatever she wanted to see.  Didn't even pay any attention to the Pearls being in court, as they were giving one to Peronnelle (is she on LJ? she does fabulous things...) Anyway, I'm standing there, chatting with [livejournal.com profile] puck_eater and [livejournal.com profile] soucyn, about something... perhaps teasing them about being the orange brigade? when Keilyn comes over, completely beaming and offers me an arm, to join the ranks of the Pearls. I think I almost fainted, and I know that sounds melodramatic, but I was so far outside my barony, and had completely missed ANY hint of anything...well, yeah. I know I was shocked enough someone commented on the look on my face, I know I was visibly shaking kneeling in front of the Queen. Still haven't... quite... grokked it - I mean, when I first got in the SCA, Mistress Ysolt had JUST gotten hers, at least within a few months, and she's who got me in, and.... So it was always in my head as a Really Big Deal that happened to other people. So yeah...

Anyway, the rest of the weekend was a blur, though fun, and apparently involved much shopping (IKEA, Penzey's, Lush.... all those things we don't have here...) And now I've finally written, so [livejournal.com profile] harleenquinzell can quit bugging me...
guenievre: (inifinite possibilities)
So I'm literally counting the seconds till I get out of work - I probably SHOULD do something more useful, but I have a feeling if I do it'll be working on the website or messing with illustrator (a program which at the moment I both love and hate - I have a feeling I'd like it better if I had a graphics tablet but anyway) rather than anything useful - I only have 2 work-related things to mess with at the moment; one of which I'm stuck on and the other I *really* don't want to play with till Monday. Bleh.

I ordered the materials for the standards today - I hope I don't hate doing this, if I *do* it'll suck as I bought enough for 12 standards. (I think - I know I have the fabric for 12, and I'm fairly sure the dye will go that far.) Anyway, I only have 3 I'm definitely doing, and a few more that I'm thinking of doing either as gifts or for cost-of-materials, if I enjoy the process - I certainly enjoy the digital part of designing them, so if the painting isn't awful, then it's all cool. Just for reference, I think it averages out to about $10/banner, not counting the tools - it may be less depending on how much dye/paint gets used per banner. I kind of wussed out, a little - there are two ways of painting the banners, "dyes" and "dye-like paints". The former gives slightly better color, supposedly, but then has to be steamed for hours in order to set the dye to the fabric. During the process, however, it can't get wet, and so doing this part effectively involves building a fairly complicated steamer. So I went with the paint, which can be set with an iron. Cop-out, I suppose, but neither version is period (that I know of, though this is NOT a project I've researched extensively) so I'm not terribly worried.

Meanwhile, tomorrow's the baronial project day - I'm going, and bringing handouts for [livejournal.com profile] 3_purple_irises, but I'm *really* not sure what project I'm bringing. I had thought about making either Roman or "allegorical" garb for Coronation, but I think I'm going to hang out in the kitchen with my Oldcastle cousins, and I just *can't* bring myself to make garb that I don't think I'll wear again, nifty as the whole "theme" thing is. And yes, Roman is good for Pennsic, but I tend to consider it a point of pride to not go farther outside my actual persona than "14th cent boy garb". So I may work on the sky-blue GFD I started a while back, so I can wear it as an underdress for Crown. Still deciding what I want the overgown to look like - I *think* I might use the purple silk twill I've been hoarding for something "special" for years; it's gorgeous and deserves to be something. Probably, at my husband's request ::evil grin:: it'll be of the cleavagey variety of interesting-sleeved GFD rather than a houppelande... have to inspire him somehow, right? Also pondering embroidery for that... and some sort of favor for the tourney. (The orle died at Ymir, it's prob. fixable but it had issues anyway - the proportions were slightly off and it wouldn't stay on the helm particularly well - if I make another one, which I think I'm planning on, it'll include integrated ties to attach to the helm...)

Speaking of boy garb, I wear it often enough I'm considering picking a second name (perhaps Jehan de Monmarché, my "brother") for when I do so.... comments? I don't really want to *confuse* people, but being "Guenièvre" in boy garb is... weird. My mannerisms change *significantly* when I'm in garb, or at least they feel like they do. In fact, I accidentally curtsied to a coworker at the demo last weekend in Atillium. And I'm fine with this, but I need to build a second set for when wearing pants hosen. Because curtsying in hosen looks... odd, and trying it in armor would just get me laughed at. So I think a second name might help...
guenievre: (new heraldry)
So I think I'll bring up something that always... well, bugs me is the wrong word. Confuses me? yeah, that'll do.

I'm not sure whether this is just a philosophical difference, or whether I'm doing something wrong, but I've noticed that when I display A&S stuff, I bring a lot less extra documentation than other people. It's not that I don't document my stuff - I do, though certainly there's room for improvement there. It's just that I only put in the stuff that I think is absolutely relevant to whatever I'm doing - and I tend to do so by citing specific phrases/pages or whatnot, rather than bringing the whole source or copies thereof.

I've noticed that other artisans bring much more elaborate notebooks/binders/etc, with lots and lots of stuff in it. I never have time to actually *read* all the stuff in the binders, so I'm not entirely sure what all is in there. I mean, I may start bring something with previous projects, but...

Am I missing something/doing something wrong? Or are those just so that if you get in a conversation about something unrelated to the current entry, you have stuff handy?
guenievre: (Default)
For the first time, my KASF Pentathlon in Persona entry... actually got done!!! (This was somewhat surprising, really, given last year's flood, etc - I to some degree didn't really think I'd get done). And it was a near thing - I took the day off on Friday (due to a difference in tenure at our jobs, I have more vacation time than N this year, so I might as well use it for something) and STILL didn't sleep.

The sieve project had to be shelved, due to the sheer length of time naalbinding at that scale takes, though I did show a few people the work-in-progress and they went ooh-ahh so I'm definitely going to have to finish it. (Also need to figure out a way to rig a loom, so that I can compare the length of time the naalbinding takes with how long a woven one would take, and compare the sturdiness of the two...)

So my entries turned out to be:

  • A research paper - the translation of Le Recuil de Riom
  • A comparison of three Cameline sauces (from Le Recuil, Le Menagier, and Chiquart)
  • A lamb-and-parsley stew (Haricot de Mouton) from same
  • A subtlety - a Golden Chicken (boneless, gilded)
  • A calligraphed copy of the same (in the original French, I don't trust my translation enough yet to want it immortalized in calligraphy

Actually, that's approximately the same order of the scores I got - the first three things did REALLY well, the last 2 needed a little more work. Not surprising, really - I'm a cook and research geek, not quite as good at making things pretty - and the chicken was a little more of a documentation stretch. And calligraphy? Well, that I'm just new at - this is the first project I've actually finished.

Anyway, I had lots of fabulous conversations, though I didn't really get to leave my table and thus I didn't really see anyone else's stuff. ::pout:: This makes me sad, as I *heard* about lots of fabulous stuff I didn't see.

I didn't win the Pentathlon... but! Their Majesties gave me a Silver Nautilus because, to quote His Majesty, I "had people stacked three deep around my table to taste stuff all day." Which is pretty near true, actually - thus the lack of wandering around. I don't mind though - for whatever reason, people just won't try stuff without someone there to explain what it is, even if there's PLENTY for both judging and random samples. (Is there any way to fix that? I'm planning on entering food in A&S at Crown, and well, am NOT planning on staying with it...)

So...now I have to get everything up on my website. Though I'm thinking about a site redesign in the meantime... and tonight? I'm digging out my armor and going to Buckston practice for the first time this year. Yay!

Edit: Photo taken by the lovely [personal profile] pinkleader, who was much more intelligent than I and actually took her camera OUT of her bag...
guenievre: (france fighting)
Crazy, crazy busy this weekend - it was fun, but damn. Come to think of it, I've been crazy busy for the past 2 weeks! Want proof? Burning Crusade's been out for 2 weeks now and I haven't even hit 61. If I wasn't in Windmasters I'd be afraid my guild would disown me!

Friday )

Saturday )

Sunday )

So I'm starting to worry - a lot - about getting everything done for Pent. I know, in many ways it's an arbitrary deadline and I shouldn't base so much stuff around competitions - but that's how my brain works. I just waited too late to start! I think it'll work out ok, though, I just won't have time to do much else. Also, I need to sit down and order all the random materials - wood, horsehair, spices, brazilwood - that I'll need, and SOON.

Of course, this week I need to take a bit of time off from KASF stuff in favor of brushing up my Pie class for the weekend, and getting garb together and what not. I've done the pie class before, I just need to go collect the actual recipes (the one detail I left out that time) and put together some slides, run through it and make sure it's long enough, that sort of thing. I should have plenty of time, what with the BoyG doing the fighting thing so much...

Not It!

Jan. 22nd, 2007 11:52 am
guenievre: (reading)
If you hadn't already seen it, [livejournal.com profile] argentlion and [livejournal.com profile] elizabethnmafia will be our next B&B - which is cool, now I have more time to play with food! And they'll do a fabulous job, of that I have no doubt. So congrats, Ros and Gaston!!!!

So meanwhile, I have some really nifty projects I'm working on for Pentathlon - the hard part at the moment is resisting the urge to go play on the Davis Library catalog instead of working. See, if I did that, I could have all the books I want to look at picked out and organized before I get there...

So what are these fabulous projects, you ask? (or maybe you don't, but I'm going to tell you anyway).

1. I'm working on a translation of a cookbook I found. I'm *really* hoping no one else is already working on this one - last time I found a cookbook I thought wasn't translated, I didn't even start working on the translation before I found someone else had already done it. (And I'm not sure there's value in doing it just for the sake of doing it - it's not like I'm a language guru who's going to find subtle point the other translator missed, I'm doing this more to get information that isn't available, out there.)

2. I'm going to cook something from said translation - haven't decided what yet. There are lots of tasty-sounding things, though, so yeah.

3. Last year I displayed several different *types* of sauces. This year, I think I'm going to try something a little different, and display several versions of the same sauce, as specified in different cookbooks. My thought is cameline sauce, but I haven't decided, for sure, that that's what I'll do.

4. I'm calligraphing a cookbook - one specifically devoted to sauces. Not sure that this is going to get bound, or not - we'll see; but I have ink I made and I'm going to make red ink for the capitals and lines betwen the recipes, which was done in some of the existant ones - and will look cool!

5. The project that in some ways is niftiest, and yet I am most intimidated by? I'm going to attempt to make a horsehair sieve. Sieves were used for *everything* in a medieval kitchen, and horsehair ones were VERY common. (Which gets really funny, actually - I found a fabulous quote by a Catholic Inquisitor on the Cathar heretics, and their opinion of Communion and horse hair sieves...) I've found evidence of naalbinding, and evidence of weaving, but these fall well before and well after my target date, so more research is in order. My hunch though, is for weaving...
guenievre: (reading)
So one thing I've noticed is a weak point of mine is that I'm... hmm, how to put this nicely? NOT a particurly wonderful teacher, and I should probably work on that, especially as due to some convincing by [livejournal.com profile] wombatgirl I'm apparently going to be doing it in Calontir. (Don't worry, Gwen, I have a cunning plan between now and then, which has already begun to take place. )

See, the problem with me teaching is that I tend to do brain dumps, with associated handwaving. The more organized I make myself be, the more that tendency fades, so it's just a matter of prepping REALLY thoroughly - and practicing - to fix this. That in mind, I started working on the Pie Class last night.I was suppose to start on this sooner, but work interfered. Still, I gave Pie Class 0.5 as a trial run at Kappellenberg last night.

(Tangent: work. We launched our new website today: www.tereckoffice.com. I wouldn't normally mention where I work, but then this journal is boring enough that I don't think it'll cause scandal. The sad thing about the website launch is that home page? well, let's just say that we were given one design to work with, it turned out badly, and so it was completely redesigned at a meeting last FRIDAY. Ask me what I did this weekend...hint #1: not sewing, hint #2: not cooking. And I still haven't managed to get the Flash intro to look right (thus why it's not there).)

So anyway, I didn't have as much time to work on the initial draft of the handout - in fact, those of you who were there would probably laugh at me to know that I didn't even have time to START on the handout till 6pm Monday.(Tangent: It was an amazingly heavily-LJ crew, come to think of it - something like 13 of 15 people there, or something like that, had LJs. Which worked out badly for poor [livejournal.com profile] syaldia - but that's her own fault for posting silly polls. Speaking of which, y'all should go answer this, just to skew the numbers back the other way...) Anyway, the handout was 45 minutes of brain-dumping, thus why it was not as well-cited as I would like. But it was organized enough that I didn't feel like I was getting lost half-way in the middle, so yay. Only managed to talk for 30 minutes on that particular brain-dump, but I've come up with several points I missed, so that's all good.

Points I plan on covering in this particular project/paper/class/thing include:

  • Definition of Pie
  • Eating of Pie
    • Who (social classes)
    • When (time periods)
    • Where (locations, situations)
    • Why? (advantages of pie over other food forms, both then and now)
    • How (manners, etc)
  • Components of Pie
    • Crusts
    • Fillings by Type
      • Meat/Fish
      • Custard/Quiche
      • Fruit
    • Compare and Contrast some historical examples
    • How pies evolved over time (early medieval vs. high medieval vs. renaissance)
    • edited to add: Regional variations Thanks!
    • How to improvise on the theme of pie (possibly, when in class form, with some philosophy on improvisation and food - this should possibly be a separate LJ entry)
  • Cooking Pies
    • Medieval techniques and equipment
      • edited to add: Baking
      • edited to add: Frying
    • Modern techniques and equipment

I'd love to hear any suggestions for other avenues / directions this could go that I'm completely missing.

I'm still intrigued by the subject as a whole, though, which is good - I'm thinking, possibly, that once I do more research that this might end up a good subject for a TI article - general enough to be both of-interest and relevant to a lot of people, no matter their persona, practical (pies really are an ideal food for tourneys), and potentially a good length. (Speaking of, those who would know - what IS a good length, in # of words, for a TI article?)

Meanwhile, [livejournal.com profile] kfitzwarin was making noises that I should do more clothing/hat related research/teaching. The problem with THAT, of course, is finding a *direction* for that. The only novel idea I've had so far would be some sort of project examining how the houppelande evolved from the cotehardie, which is a transition that I haven't seen anyone doing a lot with. This may be because it's an impossible project. I think I'll seperate thoughts on that into another separate entry though, just to cut down on the length of this one...
guenievre: (heraldry)
Not that I think any of you were waiting with bated breath or anything. 

So I never really wrote about Ymir (ancient news, I know, but bear with me).  It was cold and wet, but I was ok with that, as I wore my blue 1430-ish wool gown and stayed surprisingly toasty.  Ysolt got her Pelican, which is *awesome*, since she (well, John too, of course, but mostly Ysolt) took us to our first event - I doubt I'd be a SCAdian now without her.  [livejournal.com profile] kfitzwarin and Steve, and [livejournal.com profile] puck_eater and [livejournal.com profile] geniealisa came down and stayed with us, which was a blast, and we even seduced the K-Mistress into the WoWCrack. (squee!) All the work I did on Nick's fighting garb paid off, as he got enough compliments (in my hearing) that I'm glad I was wearing a train, as otherwise the fact my feet weren't quite touching the ground would have shown.  And to top the day off? My friends were conspriring behind my back...
Come to think of it, these are large enough I should cut them... )
Did I mention that [livejournal.com profile] harleenquinzell (whose lovely work the scroll is) tricked me? (And believe me, the scan doesn't do the thing justice - it's GORGEOUS, and only about 4" wide).  She showed it to me like 5 times while creating it (before the name went on it) asking me whether I thought the recipient would like it. Thus leading me to threaten "appropriate revenge" in court...

Anyway, the two weeks between Ymir and KASF were insane, and included flooding (eek! all fixed now, though, and it led us to discover a new comfy organization for our living room furniture, not to mention an excuse for a trip to IKEA, where we ended up with new dining room furniture.

As fo KASF? Even though I didn't enter Pentathlon, I still had a blast. I took up a set of 9 sauces (in adorable little mustard pots my husband found for me at Southern Season), and the hat and calligraphy in progress. Talked with lots of people, got lots of comments and ideas for future projects, and saw other people's VERY nifty stuff (when I managed to get away from my display, that is - I didn't finish labels, or anything, so I spent most of the day hanging out in boy garb and convincing people to come try stuff) and finished up the evening with yummy prime rib at Outback (washed down with an abundance of margaritas, even).

I've spent the last week vegging, to be honest - we've been to Molten Core three times now. I like the guild we've been running with, since WH isn't big enough to support MC runs, but the new point system is... arcane, to be honest. ::shrug:: they're new at it, it'll all work out. We ended up spending the weekend working on a new site for work - I'll link to it to show off when we get it done, as I'm kind of proud on it.  N and I had to learn CSS to do it, which will come in handy in the future. (Erminespot needs content, badly).

This week, though, it's time to get off my ass and start working on Pennsic stuff, and some other Nifty Projects...
guenievre: (heraldry)
I have lots of things to do, SCA-wise, to the point where I get home and I have to ponder - hard! - what I want to do.

This is a nice feeling.


In No Particular Order:

1. Website and AOTC-FAQ
This really needs to be a priority, as I said I'd do the latter half of this project months ago and haven't done as much as I should with it. (bad me!). I do have the stuff in place to do it now, so it's just a matter of sitting down and doing it. Still need a good website design for myself though...I'd *love* to get one that I could set up my LJ to match, but that may be asking too much...


2. Persona Pentathlon Project:
a. Tacuinum project of doom (this is the book-made-from-proper-materials project, which everyone assures me I'm crazy for trying to do in an 8 month time span starting from nothing. But we already knew I was crazy, so that's ok.)
b. Write the article/finish sauce redactions for the "Humoral Effects of 14th century sauces" paper. (i.e., the project I've been playing with off and on for years, that REALLY ought to get done).
c. clean/card wool for the Felt Hat Project, and decide how/if to dye it.
d. pick a sewing project
e. Test period methods for making the "Golden Chicken"...

3. 12th night garb for G and I...

4. Clean the house so as to have persona and/or medieval cooking parties.

5. Work on encampment stuff for next season.

The even nicer thing about these projects? Long-term deadlines....
guenievre: (peacock)
This may change, and there's a couple that I'm still dithering about *which* to take...but these are the classes I want to take and for which I should be physically on-siteCut for those who don't care )
guenievre: (maria of gueldern)
So I've never *truly* gotten a sleeve to fit to my satisfaction on a gothic fitted gown (1410 France, middle layer). I want skin tight...and while I've achieved that, I usually achieve it at the cost of some mobility (I'm a noblewoman, why should I need to lift my arms over my head... or forward more than a few inches... darn, I guess I do). So for Pennsic, I decided to make a new pattern.
Adventures... )
And thus you see the excitement that was my Friday night. Saturday and Sunday were much of the same, interspersed with a lot of WarCrack - I'm up to lvl 54, btw! woot for me - 'course, half my server is level 60's, or thereabout...but then, there's 10 zillion things to do AFTER you hit 60, so that's ok. Just no more XP grinding...
guenievre: (heraldry)
So this post is partially inspired by the cooking meme [livejournal.com profile] kfitzwarin tagged me with, but I'll get to that later in the post, but mostly b/c of a conversation I had with Nick on Tuesday.

Here's the thing, I call myself a cook - and I really do adore cooking. I mean, I considered going to cooking school for a while, until I realized that while I would adore the cooking part, the associated lifestyle would make me miserable. And yet, I don't cook dinner most evenings (nor lunch nor breakfast, but that's not quite the same thing). Why?

Well, here's the thing - I've never really learned to cook *practically*. By that I mean normal things, like, dinner. Oh, I *can* cook simple food - I just don't really enjoy it, and have a tendency to... complicate matters, until what was a 30 minute dinner becomes a 90 minute cooking adventure that dirties every pot in the kitchen in the meantime. Which is all well and good (to my credit it USUALLY comes out well) but... if I indulge this habit it tends to eat my evenings up. Which gets back to why I'm forbidden to cook between now and Pennsic (too much garb to sew!).

Still, there has to be SOME middle ground between eating out of boxes (or just eating out!) and gourmet cookery...

Anyway, on to the cooking meme... )
ETA: I suppose I should tag someone for the meme. I guess I tag [livejournal.com profile] brynpobydd.
guenievre: (heraldry)


So everyone has already spent many words talking about the cold, wet mudbath that was Crown... and it was, so I won't talk about that part of it, other than to point everyone at the Cambok Pictures, if you haven't already seen them. Well... there was one amusing moment - I managed to fall on my ass in front of the King Friday night (I was wearing little kitten heels that I hadn't changed out of after work, and the hall was already a touch slippery, and I'm a klutz). I was, of course, mortified. Janos? well, Janos was just amused, esp. given that I'm *used* to falling down and otherwise embarassing myself (see the klutz comment) so I kind of did the "get up quickly and pretend nothing happened, kitty-cat style" thing, which he commented on. ::sigh::

The important part of the event, though, at least for me, was my apprenticing ceremony to Mistress Keilyn Fitzwarin. It was held in the evening, just after the Tavern Feast. It almost got off to a bad start - the weather worsened, with strong winds and heavier rain, right after everyone gathered for the ceremony. (The pavilion walls hung around the camp shelter were almost blown down!) After a bit of scurrying to secure everything, and much fretting about my hat on my part (thus why my feathers look so ruffled in the picture above), we got started.

Keilyn opened the ceremony by talking about what a laurel/apprentice relationship should be, and why she was taking me as an apprentice. Then, of course, came the hard part - we had agreed in advance that I should swear fealty, as we both think it's an important aspect of the relationship. The only problem with this, of course, is that a. I've never sworn fealty before and b. there's a limited number of example oaths out there, esp. for a laurel/apprentice relationship rather than a land relationship. So anyway, I really wasn't sure what I was going to say, other than the major points. It was probably for the better - if I had memorized something, I was nervous enough that I would have forgotten it anyway (crowds do that to me - as you probably know if you've ever taken a class from me , I start talking faster and cracking more bad jokes the more nervous I get...). But at any rate I managed to be at least vaguely eloquent (I think - feel free to tell me I sounded stupid if you were there).

At any rate, once the swearing was done, Keilyn put a garter on my arm. She also remembered a small pewter pin for Girard, which was a nice touch. :-) That was that... and we beat a hasty retreat indoors.

I'm... quite happy about all this, I think. I know I surprised some people locally, but mostly b/c they didn't even realize we knew each other. ::grin:: The whole thing, though, is rather... grounding in some ways, if that makes sense. I'm part of something larger now, y'know? Even if that something is a bit intimidating just by reputation. Still though, everyone I've met who's household or extended household has been really fabulous - the Duchess has just been amazingly nice to me (I only wish I had gotten a chance to meet Gyrth).

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