Friday, November 30, 2012

Practice Report - 11/29/12

First practice since the surgery and it went ok; not great, not too terrible.There were only three other fencers there, Brendan Firebow, Gaspar Perrera, and Antonio Patrasso.    I switch back to using a blade length I was familiar with, and I found my sense of distance to be a whole lot better than it was at 100 Minutes War. I think the change in blade length back to something I've used for years is the right call.  Now I just need to work on my stamina.  My arm and body was getting fatigued quickly.  I think I was also over gripping my blade as my hand was hurting.  Some things to work on as always.

Turnout at practice has been getting lighter and lighter over the past few months.  I think a lot of that has to do with the space we are using as it has no heat.  It was cold out last night and inside the space we are fencing in, it was not much warmer.  They are framing out the walls to get insulation and heat in there, but I'm not sure how soon that will be completed.

Monday, November 19, 2012

100 Minutes War

So 100 Minutes War came and went.  The day was warm for this event, the last outdoor fencing I typically do for the year.  Honestly, I wasn't that excited for the event.  I had a miserable night of sleep and the day started with a comedy of errors, but I had packed my rapier gear.

This was my first time back fencing since prior to my surgery in September.  Not to take anything away from those I faced, but I felt rusty as hell.  My point was not going where I intended and my control over my own distance was lacking.  I was setting up way to close, as pointed out by Merryke.  Add to the mental/physical rust factor the very recent change in blade length and not only was I battling the rust but all the muscle memory built up by using a longer sword.  I think for the time being that I am going to switch back to the blade I am familiar with while I try to get back into form.  Once I feel I am closer to fencing near where I was at, I'll start to mix in the shorter blade.

So I geared up and sought out someone who would be a good measuring stick to see where I was at.  My first passes were with Remy.  I have not fought Remy much.  The last time was at the investiture in Carolingia.  It was a fun couple of passes, but it sucks when you see where your point is going, only to come up a few inches too short.  Good thing was remembering to use my dagger, as a few times, I was able to close and get my dagger in for the kill.  At least that was a plus.  After a break I sought out Merryke and I was setting up way too close against him.  I noticed this during a few passes and made a conscious effort to stay at proper distance, but it was not happening when we would engage.  So I have more than a few things to work on.

After getting some warm ups in, I had to go do some official stuff as a reporter from Maxim Magazine had showed up on site.  I met him and made sure to introduce him to the local seneschal, also inquiring about the focus of his piece which is to be on armored combat.  This should be in the March issue I believe.

Upon my return to the fencing field, they started selecting teams.  Alexander went for the shortest women he could when given a choice.  It was an interesting strategy.  I was selected to be on his team and named one of his sub commanders for the first battle.  It was a 50 minute game of capture the flag.  We lost the flag at the 25 minute mark and were down 0-1.  We switch sides and this time Caine and I were set out to freelance for a bit.  On the opening, we made our way down, engaged a few, and Caine was taken out.  I got all the way to the opponent's flag, but with no backup, all I could do was harass the opposition.  I took out Retep and then lo and behold, Alexander and Quinn showed up.  We were out numbered 4-3, but the flag was right there.  Alexander took one out and then casually grabbed the flag and sauntered off.  Quinn and I still commander the oppositions attention, so they never noticed the big man wearing periwinkle walking away with their flag.  So their flag was on its way back to even the score up, however, the opposition had gained our flag.  Fighting was fierce and I was able to get near our side's flag but not close enough to recover it.  The time ran out and the second battle was a stalemate.  So we lost 0-1 in points, but it was some fun melee.  Afterwards, during the debriefing, I needed some food and water, so I headed over to get some.  They were going to run more melees or something, but I was tired and hungry, so Jennie and I packed up our stuff and headed out.

Overall, I had fun.  It is going to be a struggle to knock the rust off.  I also need to drop some weight too...