Well, another craft fair completed this weekend. It's been such a laugh I've been almost in tears for much of it.
Working as an independant artist can be quite a lonely existence at times and I miss the banter and cameraderie of working as part of a team. So one of the reasons I do craft fairs is to get myself out of the studio and into the wide world again. The regular traders at the Southwold fair have become very good friends and I look forward to going, even if sometimes we don't sell enough. However this weekend was quite a rewarding one financially.
It was a really windy weekend in Southwold. I love the fresh air and the wind is a bonus....it speeds up the elderly. Steve Harrowven, of S & S Photography along with his wife Trudy organises the Southwold shows. Steve is one of those larger than life characters (in more ways than one) and manages to have me in fits for a lot of the time. Being originally from a different part of the country I still find the local regional accent a bit of a novelty and Steve has the broadest Norfolk accent I've ever heard. For some reason our topic of conversation was food and someone asked him what his favourite food was. "Smooked 'eron" replied Steve. "Well where I come from heron is a wading bird and we don't eat them" says I. "Noo. Smooked 'eron" ....."He means smoked herring, Peter" translated Trudy for me.
Tom the wood carver was demonstrating his craft again this week. He brought along his new shaving horse that he'd just made, to try out. Banging and crashing away behind his display I asked him how it was working out. "It could do with being about 4 inches longer" replied Tom quite loudly, just as the hall for some reason went completely silent, as rooms sometimes do....... Wendy nearly fell off her stool.
Anyhow footfall was really good Friday and Saturday. The hall is quite small so once we get busy it can be quite chaotic. At one point a large women dressed head to toe in animal print just bumped right into me. I thought I was being attacked my an obese leopard....terrifying.
Saturday evening Steve and Trudy were going out to dinner and it was a themed affair, the theme being 1940's. Steve went out and got himself a cheap shirt to wear as part of his outfit, but after trying it on he found that it must have been a factory reject as the collar was sewn on around to one side, a bit skewed making it impossible to wear. That was funny enough but on the Sunday we had a man walk in who obviously had some major problem with his neck and shoulder. I know I shouldn't have found a funny side to the poor man's situation but his shoulder was all hunched up into his neck which he couldn't seem to turn at all, causing him to look a bit Quasimodo like. I leaned across and whispered to Steve "You ought to try and sell him that shirt...it'd fit him I reckon" Well that set him off and the more he laughed the more I laughed until we were just gibbering wrecks. I was in tears.
We don't start until late on the Sunday, so I took the dogs out early to the beach before breakfast. Pulling into the car park at Sizewell there was no-one about except one camper van parked up, with all of the curtains drawn. Someone had obviously camped over night. I slid open my van door and the two boys leapt out. Leon ran straight around to the other side of the camper van. What I hadn't realised was that, out of sight to me, a family were sat around a picnic table eating their breakfast . There was a scream and a crash as pandemonium broke out. Then my little brown demon came trotting back looking very pleased with himself.....can't resist a sausage that Leon. Lucky for me the family saw the funny side of it and, aopologies made we went off for our walk.
In Southwold they have a town crier. A magnificent old gentleman, well into his 80's with the loudest voice you can imagine (photograph by Dominic Whiten Photography) Every now and again you can hear him ringing his bell before shouting at the top of his voice "Oh Yay! Oh Yay! Oh Yaaaay!" followed by some announcement relating to some event or another occurring in the town. Well Sunday morning (before we opened for trading) he began ringing the bell....began shouting "Oh Yay! Oh Yay! Oh Yaaaay!".....and then some bloke reversed his car into him and knocked him over! This is no word of a lie. While he was lying there he grabbed his bell, rang it again and started yelling "Oh No! Oh No! Oh Noooooooo!"....what a legend.
The next one I'm taking part in is in 3 weeks time. Looking forward to it already.