Okay, so you've read this document, put together a basic kit, come up with a plausible portrayal of a medieval person, and you understand what we're all about. Time to get medieval, right? Right! Our email list is constantly full of messages, giving details for all sorts of activities. It does mean you need to get in the habit of regularly checking your email, but opportunity abounds. Here are some tips for you to get the most out of your experience in the club:
Always be learning
Current knowledge of the middle ages is constantly changing, and modern technology has increased this rate of change dramatically. There are always new information and new discoveries being made, which can and will change what we know about what “medieval” really means. As a club, we're always nerding out about medieval history, and discussing the topic, both among ourselves, and the larger re-enactment community.
The LMC puts on a variety of events, from camps, to feasts, to educational seminars, to public performances (what we call “public programming”). Once you've been invigilated, you are 100% welcome to take part in any, or all, of these events. It all depends on what you'd like to get out of the club – some people really enjoy performing in public, while others just like to camp out in medieval gear, once or twice a year. The level of your involvement is totally up to you. It's also a great idea to attend events outside of the LMC. There are a lot of different organizations out there, doing things similar to ourselves. You can learn a lot from these groups – in
fact, you can probably learn more from groups with different perspectives, than you can from a bunch of people you already know. Going to events outside of Lethbridge is a wonderful way to avoid stagnation.
Being a Re-enactor
Anyone can own a bunch of cool, old stuff – lots of people are collectors, for whatever reason pleases them. While collecting is certainly a part of what the LMC does, there is more to it than simply putting together an assortment of medieval gear.
It is one thing to have all the right period stuff for a particular time and place, but something else to understand a person's thinking about the world, and their place in it. The past is a foreign land, and a medieval person's world view would include many aspects that would seem quite different from our modern perspectives.
Everyone has a different way of approaching and expressing this. Some members’ material kit meets the bare minimums; others have a full camp setup complete with furniture and kitchen. Your persona may be very basic, leaving you plenty of room to improvise, or it may be a fully-formed person with an elaborate history and personality. Regardless of our individual strategies, all have a common thread: we are seeking to immerse ourselves in history, and thereby, to learn more deeply than by simply reading and understanding a book.
The Real Journey Begins
Congratulations, fellow adventurer. You have proven yourself capable, and been found worthy by your peers. The past awaits your discovery, via whichever paths you might choose. Those paths might be difficult, or perhaps even treacherous at times, but they are also full of satisfaction and joy and wonder. Many others wander these paths – ahead, alongside, behind. Some can barely be glimpsed, exploring trails far distant. All are seeking together, as best they are able.
You are now one of these people.