Didn't do the week as a whole this year after last year's camping, so that worked....
Was elsewhere - could only get there for the Wednesday, so had to be the real essentials - seeing who I met whilst doing Anchor Gardens & Middle Bar Upstairs, Craft and Music fairs and, alas, going through pubs with indecent haste. Very much essence of Sidmouth.
The Anchor Gardens have got even steeper. Danced anyway; particularly to PolkaWorks early evening. Both times I went to the bar, saw someone I knew. 100% correlation of something-or-other. GBH & co contingent well represented, not to mention Ralphie striding purposefully past. And of course Mr Kiddier on keyboard.
Middle Bar - bit of lunchtime and evening. Tip: do not dance and then go straight into room full of people singing with windows shut.
Thankfully opened soon.
Thoroughly enjoyed both sessions. Morticia made herself known which was good. I must dig out the song about the Bantam Cock.
Sue the Borderer/from Bideford is saying I ought to lead songs even if I am a bass. Now choruses/directed harmony I can do, but this means learning to hold a tune reliably solo and learn all the verses. Be as well to try, anyway. Thanks, Sue.
And noted Richard's well-merited promotion to the Bench.
Neil at the back of the Music Fair was as gloomy as ever: Music Room had conspicuous 'reductions'. And the undiscounted price of a new Pokerwork has risen to a quoted £600. Managed not to buy a discounted mandolin, again.
First time for several years I haven't seen Rollo Woods - West Gallery amongst other things - either in the Anchor Garden or on the Front. Neither did I see Kevin Gorton on fiddle, melodeon, recorder and Surrey bagpipes in the Bedford or the Swan as usual, but then he is said not to have gone. Nor Phil Atkinson in the same sessions. A real break with ritual.
Thought I saw Moira Craig quietly looking at her notebooks in the back of Sue's Pantry. And saw Martin Carthy pushing Norma on wheels, who was directing him vigorously and in detail....