Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Starwood '08 Re-Entry

Corby and I are back home, after 10 hours in the Cleveland airport due to thunderstorms. We had the same problem on the way to Starwood, but not as long and with Oberon to share our wait.

We arrived during a huge thunderstorm. Lightning flashed all around our little puddle-jumper plane when we were airborne, and continued on the ride to Brushwood with charioteer par excellence, Gnorm. The highways had hydroplaning conditions. We hadn't eaten because the vendors were closed at the airport. Gnorm, as always, had a nutritious soup at his campsite that he only needed to reheat. That may sound good - and the soup was good -- but the conditions under which we had to eat it were less than comfortable. The tarp above the picnic table holding his Coleman stove sagged with water, which you could either poke at and get it to overflow the tarp, or wait for it to start dripping from directly overhead. Getting the water out of the tarp meant flooding the ground beneath, making the already-soaked ground under our feet into deeper mud and water. The benches and chairs were also too wet to sit on without getting a cold tush. We persevered and ended with hot food in our tummies, welcome warmth after the ordeal of traveling and sloshing through the site.

We found a dry place to sleep in the big long guest trailer, the one with blue tarps for walls. The next morning we found the wee trailer our friend, artist Lauren Raine, had prepared for us. She'd put some swoops of light ropes out the front door, and equipped it with a novena candle and some other candles, lighter (something we couldn't carry on the plane), incense (to mitigate the slight moldy odor of the trailer), wine, water, plastic glasses, and crackers.

Our friends Kala and Dress from the Bay Area Reclaiming community shared our camping area in a tent Lauren had prepared for them. I got some photos of all of us together, and some great ones of Dress' spiral-glittered pate that I downloaded to my computer while waiting all day Monday in the airport, but they seem to have vanished. Bummer!

Starwood was not as well-organized this year as it usually is, so there were some glitches. One was that I was scheduled for a workshop entitled "Brewing Spicy Multi-Traditional Ritual" on the day we spent getting there. I was told there were 15 disappointed people waiting. What can I say? They knew when they'd booked our flights. Sue rescheduled it for Thursday, but only Corby, Lauren and Larry Cornett (publisher of Pagan calendar of events long before anyone was out of the broom closet) were able to come at that time. I was disappointed, too.

My talk on Pagans in interfaith work went well. But best of all was another panel called: "When We Call, Who Comes? A Panel on Pagan Thea/ology." Watch this space for more on that, since it deserves an entry of its own.