But I have excuses!
Actually, just one really. I haven't posted in nearly a month because that's how long it's been since Musefest. Every time I think "I want to blog about this" I realize that I have not yet addressed Musefest, and as it was a big event for me I can't simply neglect it. But oh how I wish I would. In order to continue blogging I must simply clench my teeth and bear the pain for the moments it takes to write this.
Musefest. Absolutely disastrous, in my worst nightmares it couldn't have gone much worse. It started out fine, we arrived way earlier than necessary on Thursday, had the booth set up by about 5pm, and a ton of time to kill. No biggy, I made a ton of jewelry and the kids went exploring. The people were pleasant, the site was nice, and the rain we'd seen on our way in cleared away. I had high hopes, and we all went to bed with pleasant anticipation for what was to come.
We awoke to find that the electricity still wasn't hooked up, and we would be eating chips and salsa for breakfast. We were assured that the food vendors we were so counting on (as it turned out the site was much, much further from town than expected) would be electrically wired and cooking by 10. No problem. 2pm rolled around, no food, tummy's grumbling, and no fest folk had arrived. Music wouldn't be starting until 5pm, and everyone on site was hungry and grouchy. 5pm rolled around, the band went up, not so hot, and a few people trickled in. Drunk people.
After a long slow evening I began to realize my mistake. This was not a family fun festival as I'd been lead to believe, this was a chance for all the druggy kids of Ithaca to network, get high, and act like morons. There was no money to be made, and no ATM on site to facilitate spending. I resigned myself to a really slow weekend, hoping for $500 to cover my expenses and maybe enough profit to put towards another booth fee somewhere else. It was not to be. We stuck it out as long as we could Friday night, then went to sleep, arising relatively late in the morning to find there were still very few people around, and even less with any money. We were reassured that Saturday night would be a great night for vending because there would be more people, more families.
This too was not to be. It had been off and on cloudy and scorchingly hot all weekend, and around 8:30 that evening the clouds rolled in in earnest. The sky turned black, and beyond it was a pink glow I initially believed was the sunset, as the clouds were moving incredibly fast and I thought perhaps they were blowing right over. As that pink expanded and began to turn a muddy brown I reconsidered. Instantly the wind came up and I grabbed my tent, trying desperately to zip up the walls, screaming my head off for the kids. the rain hit like an anvil, coupled with the wind, ripping the walls from my hands. The kids ran up to help and we got three sides zipped, but couldn't see enough through the buckets of rain in our eyes to get the forth. I clung desperately, trying to hold the sides together as the sky turned a brilliant chartreuse green, and wind whipped through the tent, knocking all my carefully laid out displays to the muddy ground. Somehow in the hubbub my thumb had been sliced open, and as I fought with the wind, soaked to the bone, bleeding all over my nice white tent, all I could do was hope to got that a tornado didn't come ripping through. I didn't know what I'd do if the kids got hurt.
The storm died almost as quickly as it came up, and at 9:20 we stood calm, looking around at what was left of my jewelry. Not much. Earrings lay trampled in the mud, bent, broken, or simply gone. Everything was soaked through and we were all shaking with exhaustion and freezing cold. I have honestly never been more miserable. I called home and told them we were on our way, and we crammed all our stuff into my car, amazed we fit it all, and limped the four hours home, freezing cold and defeated.
Musefest was an incredible loss for me. Literally hundreds of dollars. I missed classes for it, spent all my free time preparing for it, and didn't make back my booth fee. One good thing did come from it and that is that the few things I did sell were designs I'd created specifically for the festival crowed, so at least I know those were spot on. There simply weren't enough people.
That is my excuse, and I'm sticking to it.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
But I have excuses!