I am back from Norsk Høstfest in Minot, North Dakota. The nation rejoices.
I have a couple mediocre pictures to share, taken with my Kindle, but Photo Bucket is moving very slowly tonight, so I’ll have to upload them later.
As you know, it’s been two years since I did Høstfest. Things tend to change when you neglect them for 24 months, and there were many changes for the Vikings.
One major change was that they moved us to a different building. That move had benefits and drawbacks, as I see it. The main benefit was increased space. We now share that space with other Viking groups and individuals, but that’s a benefit too (though it might be hard on our pride). There were several vendors, and several craftspeople showing off their skills. So it’s a much more educational event than it used to be. Also the music played in the building (Nordic and Sami) was more evocative than the Country and Western we generally had in our old venue.
The drawback was a certain separation from the mainstream of the festival. People had to pass through two temporary covered walkways to reach us, and there were a lot of people (or so we heard) who gave up on finding us, or never realized we were there at all.
Still, business wasn’t bad, and was quite good on Saturday, the final day. My own book sales were a little disappointing, though. I think I about broke even on the trip.
My most memorable moment came after I realized I had misplaced my cell phone. I went to the lost and found area the following morning and described it to the ladies there. After that they went all Jack Webb on me: “Do you have any idea where you might have lost it, sir?”
I said it might have been in the hallways somewhere. Then one of them went into a closet and came back with my phone. A note had been taped to it saying, “Porta-Potty.”
Then they broke up in laughter. “You’re just having fun with me, aren’t you?” I said. “I’m your morning’s entertainment.” They admitted that it was true. Theirs was a weary job, and they needed to wring from it whatever amusement they could.
I pointed to my security identification badge, which gave my name and (as was the case for all the Vikings) the designation, “Entertainer.”
“Well, that’s what I’m here for,” I said. “Entertainment.”