Thursday, October 2, 2008
(cross posted from my other blog Musings of the Fae) So I last left you, dear reader, when I was on my was to Tuatha na bPréacháin Naomh, the Tribe of the Sacred Crows in East Bridgewater. It was a fine night, though I stayed later than I should, especially give the fact that I was supposed to be in Andover at 8 am to set up my booth at the Eastern MA Pagan Pride Project and I probably didn't get home from East Bridgewater till around 1:30 or 2 am, not quite sure. Well, I figured that this year that seems to be my trend, not getting any sleep the night before the PPDs, so I figured I would make it a tradition.. So regardless, the next morning I was up bright and chipper, at least this time most of my car was packed, but I still had more things to pack up and finally hit the road. Luckily for me my friend Debi was also vending at PPD and when I called her she was only about one exit further along on the highway, so I sped up to catch her, and followed her to the site, since she had been there before and I never had. It was rather twisty and turny up there, and it was at Harold Parker State Forest in North Andover. So, you may or may not know, that I also do this hobby called letterboxing where wacky individuals like myself hunt out hidden tupperware containers in the woods or other locations, that have in them a logbook and a rubber stamp, which sometimes are hand-carved. To see some examples of my stamps you can check them out on my blockprints page So if you want to know more about the hobby you can check out www.letterboxing.org. I found my first letterbox while I was hiking with my daughter over 5 years ago, and the rest is history, I have been letterboxing ever since.... if you are interested about more of my letterboxing adventures you can check out my letterboxing blog called Various and Sundry Musings I guess I am all about the Musings... So, the reason I bring up the whole letterboxing thing here is that I had decided I would have a one day only letterbox at my booth, and post it on the local letterboxing lists and have letterboxers visit me. Now, this is something I also did at Faerieworlds in Eugene, Oregon, and plan on doing at Faeriecon in Philadelphia Pennsylvania, next weekend, Oct 10-12.. so if you happen to be at any event I am at, call me Dragonfly and if I have a box at that location I will give you the clues.. so when I was vending my art at the Eastern Massachusetts Pagan Pride Project in North Andover, MA, on September 21, 2008, it was my pleasure to be vending next door to Sha the Loon Witch, who is also a letterboxer whom I had met but not previously exchanged with (when letterboxers stamp their personal stamps in each other's logbooks), and also to get her EMPPP letterbox which she was replanting. My first letterboxer to arrive and get the box was Choi, it was a pleasure to meet him, he plants many beautifully carved boxes in my area, and it was great to finally have a name to put to the face. Also, my friend Kyerstein tried boxing for the first time and she wrote in the logbook that I got her hooked on it... so look out for a Dragon Fairy coming your way ;-) My next visitors were letterboxers who were new to the area, and if I hadn't posted they never would have known about the event, so I was pleased that something I had done had a positive ripple in the universe. So Nature and Caipora came on by with their lovely backpacks full of their greyhounds, who also stamped into the logbook, Peeky and Vito. Such wise and sage faces on those dogs, to me they were reminiscent of some of Brian Froud's pixies or something. Next up were The Merry Pranksters and the Woodland Wanderers with Go Catman and Music Man, and The Sparrows Interest. I had previously met Pete of the Merry Pranksters, but it was a pleasure to meet Deb. It was so wonderful to have all these lovely letterboxers come out and see me :-) Rounding out a perfect day was the visit from Old Hounder and Siamese! They didn't have their stamps however, so we will have to finish their half of the exchange at Fright Night.... And speaking of Fright Night, after many years of missing this wonderful event, Maine Kokopellian was finally able to get me to commit to coming, and I will even have some of my art with me. I believe there may be some night boxing Faerie Hunting going on ..... so speaking of hunting faeries.. I was very excited when talking to all of these letterboxing folks at EMPPP because Faerie Magazine was interested in having me write an article about letterboxing... It all started because I am on the online Fae community called Enchanted Folk and I had mentioned in my profile under hobbies that I enjoyed letterboxing. Well when I got my welcome message from Be Montague who is the wonderful woman behind Enchanted Folk, she wrote to me asking about letterboxing, wondering if it had to do with decorating our mailboxes, as she is from England and over there mailboxes are called letterboxes... actually letterboxing originated in England, and was called letterboxing because in the early days it was done with pre-addressed post cards that would then need to be posted in a letterbox. Well in any case, I wrote back to her a lengthy email about what letterboxing is, and how it originated in England, etc. Well I didn't hear back from her for quite some time, so I thought I must have bored her to tears in my rambling on and on about letterboxing.. well it turns out that was not the case. I wrote to Be to ask if I had bored her, and sorry I rambled on so long etc, and she said that to the contrary she found it very interesting, and as the UK Editor of Faerie Magazine that she thought it might make for an interesting article.. so it began, and she asked if I would write one, but said she couldn't promise me anything, but that she would run it by Kim Cross who is the Editor in Chief of Faerie Magazine. Well a few weeks ago I happen to call Faerie Magazine about my advertising and ended up on the phone with Kim , so I asked her if Be had spoken to her about me, and Kim didn't think so, but asked why she would have had occasion to do so, so I said about letterboxing, and Kim recalled talking to Be about it, but didn't realize that it was me that would be writing the article.... So she said she was interested in knowing more info and could I email her about it. I did, and that Saturday night before PPD I got my first response from her, which was that she did think that it was something her readers would be interested in, and would I write an article.. so this was all very exciting, and I sent her off the article, which I have since heard back from her that they will definitely use it in their Winter or Spring issue!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am so excited, and I am also very excited that they will be featuring my Faerie Luminaries in their Things We Love section of the Fall 2008 Issue, which I will get to see at Faeriecon, where I happen to be vending on the same block of booths as Faerie Magazine (you can stop by and say hi to me at booth 1512) So I had been babbling to all of these letterboxers who were so kind to come and visit me that this article was a possibility, so I am very pleased to say it is going to be a reality. If you would like to know more about my letterboxes you can check out my profile and logbook on atlas quest (another letterboxing site) Well, the letterboxing was only half of the excitement that day, had a wonderful time listening to The Gypsy Nomads, Jenna Greene, and Sharynne NicMhacha from the Moors but also meeting so many wonderful people and connecting with wonderful friends. Among the highlights was seeing all of my Pagans of Norfolk County Folks, including Marie and Tony from Prance the Witches Path, and Marie was kind enough to be glowing about my artwork to Christian Day of Festival of the Dead and Hex fame, so he came over to meet me, and was interested in having my work in his store, so visit Hex and keep your eye out for some bad faeries... It was wonderful as well getting to hang with Doug Greene, Jenna's husband, and I look forward to seeing the both of them at Faeriecon. Also a bunch of the Salem fire performers came out to hang, so that was really cool (nothing was on fire though, but will be this weekend at Wildfire) and more of the PNC crowd were great to see and hang with, and some even bought my art! So thanks for keeping me company Glinda, Gaia, Babs, Brian and Kate, Tony and Marie, Delysia, Reuladair, Darla, don't think I am forgetting anyone. If you want to see more pics of this you can check out my pics on my myspace well after that very long day I headed out to Salem, to help build a dome for Wildfire, but by the time I got there people were gone.. which was fine, as I was exhausted!
Monday, September 22, 2008
So for those of you letterboxers who have found some of my boxes or know anything about me, you might know I am a little bit "into" faeries... in fact as an artist I primarily do faerie art these days. Well, I have been burning the candle at both ends and in the middle trying to do it all, work full time, full time single parent, and full time art business, so I have been more than a little busy. If you want to know more about the art and life side of me, you can check out my website at www.lennnonstuio.com and I also have another blog for that http://lennonstudio.blogspot.com/ called Musings from the Fae So the upshot is I am very busy and haven't been out boxing much, so I figured I would have the boxers come to me, so I have planted boxes at events where I have been vending my artwork, so most recently I was vending my art at the Eastern Massachusetts Pagan Pride Project in North Andover, MA, which was yesterday, September 21, 2008. It was my pleasure to be vending next door to Sha the Loon Witch, whom I had met but not previously exchanged with, and also to get her EMPPP which she was replanting. My first letterboxer to arrive and get the box was Choi, it was a pleasure to meet him, he plants many beautifully carved boxes in my area, and it was great to finally have a name to put to the face. Also, my friend Kyerstein tried boxing for the first time and she wrote in the logbook that I got her hooked on it... so look out for a Dragon Fairy coming your way ;-) My next visitors were letterboxers who were new to the area, and if I hadn't posted they never would have known about the event, so I was pleased that something I had done had a positive ripple in the univers. So Nature and Caipora came on by with their lovely backpacks full of their greyhounds, who also stamped into the logbook, Peeky and Vito. Such wise and sage faces on those dogs, to me they were reminiscent of some of Brian Froud's pixies or something. Next up were The Merry Pranksters and the Woodland Wanderers with Go Catman and Music Man, and The Sparrows Interest. I had previously met Pete of the Merry Pranksters, but it was a pleasure to meet Deb. It was so wonderful to have all these lovely letterboxers come out and see me :-) Rounding out a perfect day was the visit from Old Hounder and Siamese! They didn't have their stamps however, so we will have to finish their half of the exchange at Fright Night.... And speaking of Fright Night, after many years of missing this wonderful event, Maine Kokopellian was finally able to get me to commit to coming, and I will even have some of my art with me. I believe there may be some night boxing Faerie Hunting going on ..... keep your eyes open! And for those of you who might be into the whole Trading Card phenomenon, I currently have 2 ATCs listed on ebay, both are originals so check em out! http://myworld.ebay.com/katiekat74
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Well it was quite a long hiatus from boxing, about 2 years, a little less, but I have to say that now that I have been bitten by the bug again, it feels like I never left (except of course for the zillions of boxes and boxers I have never heard of, a lot can happen in two years!) So, the story of my reiinfection with this letterboxing obsession was sort of unusual. I went on a girls weekend to North Conway New Hampshire with some friends of mine, this was our fourth annual trip. Now I had previously told some of these friends about letterboxing, but this was years ago. In my 2 year hiatus it didn't exactly come up as a topic of conversation. Well, it just so happened that my friend Michelle whom I had told at least two years ago about the hobby, just started boxing this summer with her kids, and was really enjoying it. It also happened that she had been staying up North the previous week with her family camping, and just happened to have all of her letterboxing stuff in the car, including numerous clues printed out for the area. So I was game, usually these weekends are a buying frenzy when all the girls hit the outlets and do some serious damage shopping (myself included) and it seemed like a good diversion from spending money (one of the things I loved about the hobby to begin with). So we did a hike up to Diana's Baths with all of the girls, to call it a hike it really exaggerating, but it was a nice scenic spot, and while they cooled off at the baths I had to look for the boxes there, my friend had gotten them already on her family camping trip. So now with my new finds I was a little more raring to go. The other girls wanted to do some more shopping, but Michelle was game for finding some boxes she hadn't found, so we dropped the others off at the Inn where we were staying, and we headed out to Echo Lake to find two boxes there. We got to Echo Lake and started following the clues, we found Echo Gecko without incident, and were on our way to find White Horse Ledge. So we are hiking along, noting the notable things there are to see that are mentioned in the clues like an old car and the foundation of a sugar shack, and we are going along looking for a set of stairs that are up next in the clues. Well shortly I hear a sound, which I thought was possibly just Michelle behind me, or possibly, another hiker on the trail ahead of me. So I stopped to get a better listen, and then I saw it, a full grown Black Bear! It was on the trail ahead of us uphill and heading off the trail away from us. I alerted Michelle to the bear, which she couldn't' see as she had a boulder obscuring her view from it. I quickly asked her for her camera and proceeded to hike a little further uphill to get a better shot (do not try this at home!) Don't know why I felt compelled to do so, but I definitely had a weird adrenaline rush thing going on. So I snapped a few shots and we were on our way, the bear, who was well aware of our presence, was happy to see us go. So we decided to leave this box for another day, but one thing was sure, I was once again bitten by the boxing bug!
Friday, August 24, 2007
So yesterday I had the great opportunity to go shark fishing for my first time. One thing always to be considered for me though is my propensity for motion sickness, but having purchased my seabands (since I couldn't find the ones I already owned!) and taken two Dramamine, I thought I was ready for the world....... So we drove to Fairhaven, the we being me, my boyfriend Ed, and business associate of his visiting from Canada named Hugues. The seas were fairly mild leaving the marina, but there was a small craft warning in effect for the area we were heading, so the plans were a little sketchy. We drove out 39 miles, and the water temperature, which had been checked online, was fairly cold for sharks, 63.6 degrees, I think they like it around 70 degrees farenheit, so this was not ideal conditions. Unfortunately with checking the temp online, if there is any kind of cloud cover then it is anybody's guess. So we arrived at the sharking grounds, and I do have to day there is something pretty spectacular about not seeing any land at all around you. Unfortunately for me, while I didn't feel seasick per se, I felt totally exhausted from my Dramamine, and very cleverly I had left the seabands on the kitchen counter where they were certainly not of any use to me. Hugues was feeling pretty seasick, and had also taken the Dramamine. Ed, shark-fisher extraordinaire, didn't take any kind of medicine, was doing just fine, running around chumming for sharks, baiting hooks, casting reels, while Hugues way lying down inside the hull, and I was stretched out on my chair with my feet up, feeling rather woozy. Funny that I felt fine the whole drive out, not bad at all, but as soon as we stopped the boat, it was rocking quite a bit, and the seas were definitely rougher that far out. I mostly felt totally wiped out and exhausted. So Hugues got up from lying down inside the hull, said he felt much better and that I should try, and forget it, as soon as my head was down I was out! Later on, while lying inside the pit I heard the quick zing of the reel letting out line, and thought perhaps it was Ed letting out more line, but craked an eyelid just to be sure, there was a little rush of adrenalin, what if it is a shark? Well froom watching the hustle and bustle now happening on the deck I deduced that indeed, a shark had been hooked, and now it was time for the shark fight. Hugues was given the rod and the gauntlet was thrown. So while Ed went about strapping Hugues into the proper harnesses and such, Hugues was wrestling with this shark on the hook that was pretty angry about it, and swimming every which way to try and get free. I guess with shark fishing you just hold on and let them tire themselves out a bit before you even attempt to reel them in. So Hugues was putting up a good fight, and I was doing my best to watch and get a good view without being in the way. The problem with fishing something that big and that angry is that it is big enough to do some damage to your boat or your engines if it gets tangled up in them, so there was quite a bit or repositioning going on to keep the line straight and the shark out from underneath the boat. And then we saw it, that big, angry fish jumped out of the water trying to free itself, a beautiful big 6 foot Mako shark which weighed between 350-400 pounds. Hugues put up quite a fight, and it was quite a sight to see that beautiful fish jump out of the water a second time. It was exhilirating, especially to see the size of the shark in comparison to the size of the boat, an to realize that when you get him in the boat, he and all three rows of teeth he has are going to be very much alive and extremely pissed off. So the struggle continues and Hugues is putting in a good fight until all of a sudden he has fallen on his ass and all the tension on the rod is gone, he reels in the line and the shark had bitten through the braided wire leader and was gone. That was our only close call for the day, not sure how long we were out there for, after that, but never got a bite again, and returned back to the dock around 4:30 empty handed. Still it was an amazing time, exhaustion and all. There is something completely exhilirating about seeing something that big and wild and dangerous out there in the wild, not behind some glass. It gave me the same thrill I had recently while letterboxing and my friend and I ran into some unexpected company on the trail, but that story will have to wait for another time......