I'm back from three weeks at the National Stage Combat Workshop, aka the Actor Combatant Workshop, aka fight camp. I'm ever so thrilled that I went, and ever so sad that it's over.
At the urging of my dear friend/mentor/teacher/spirit guide Ellen, I first attended the National in 2006. It was a much smaller thing then. I learned lots, made good friends, and had a great time, but I was not prepared for what I experienced this time around. I expected the pain (which came, but was in different places than it was last time), and I expected to learn, and I expected to be frustrated, and I expected to make a few friends.
What I did not expect was to fall in love with roughly 30 people. I did not expect to leave with inside jokes, and theme songs, and catchphrases that will shock and unsettle the people in my regular life. I did not expect to be texting fight friends during the intermission of Comedy of Errors or Macbeth or Cyrano to complain about fights. Perhaps most of all, I did not expect that I would ever be so desperately sad and utterly bereft to be back in Staunton, a place that I love more than anywhere else I've ever lived (excepting my hometown).
After three weeks of pain, anguish, delirious happiness, many bruises, several scrapes, hundreds of falls, a few tears, and six very unfortunate mosquito bites, I tested on Friday in Rapier & Dagger, Unarmed, and Broadsword. I think I and my amazing partner, Jered, did well. Results are due sometime around the beginning of August, but I'm not concerned. More important to me, much, much more important to me, are my memories and friendships forged in steel (and aluminum, because I'm dainty and steel is heavy).
#bootybruise #binddownforwhat #shunt #safdgotthatswagger