Part 2: Saturday first half

I tend to wake up early and so was, by far, the first one up that morning.

I saw a new car in our area with Iowa plates, so I assumed our Iowan friend had made it there.  I visited with a few of the other folks from other groups who also rose early and got a tour of the camp ground.

We had been promised “A modern campground with full facilities” by the organizer.

The shower turned out to be a hose over the top of a box made from 4 wood posts that had garbage bags stapled between them to make sides.  There was a big black plastic bag it went through for “solar heating”.  Maybe that would have worked in the sun.  But, on a cloudy day between some trees?  It was cold.

The “modern” bathroom was a similar structure with the addition of a horizontal plank with a hole cut out of it over a pit in the ground.

We had done a show a few weeks before at a Boy Scout Camp that had hot water showers, fully piped bathrooms and dedicated camp spots to set up tents on. 

That was what we had in mind as a “modern campground with full facilities”, and this did not live up to that in any way.

I wandered over to where the fire was the night before and saw the organizer there.

“Make sure all your people are here for the 9AM meeting,” he said.

“That’s two hours before the show starts.  Can’t I attend and tell them the details?”


“OK, I’ll go make sure they’re all up.”

I walked back up the steep hill and began waking people up.

When I got to A’s truck there was a shout from inside.

“I’ll kill him!” A shouted.  “I’ll kill him!”

He climbed out of the truck and began running around shouting.

“Where is he?  I’ll kill him!”

“What are you on about?” I asked.

“Dieter!  He keeps running around my truck shouting his name!  It kept me from sleeping!”

“I didn’t hear anything like that.  He arrived even later than us, so is probably still asleep.”

“Is that his tent!” A shouted, pointing at the tent that arrived in the night.

He ran over to it and began to shout obscenities at it.

Dieter soon emerged, shouting obscenities back.

Everyone other than A was very confused as we had no idea what he was talking about.

“He keeps shouting his name at me!” A shouted.

As this went on a small bird landed on A’s truck and made a sound much like “Dieter, Dieter, Dieter.”

“I think it was the bird.” I said, cutting between the two shouting people.

“What?” they both asked.  The bird graced us with another example.

“You are a moron!” Dieter said to A.  The rest of us agreed.

Everyone got on their costumes and walked down the steep hill to the tent that was the faire office.

“I’m glad you’re all here,” Doctor Neo said.  “I made sure you are all here so you can have a good breakfast.”

He pulled out imitation chocolate pop-tarts.

“We’re not going to eat those,” I told him.  “We bought food for camping and we’ll have that for breakfast.”

“YOU HAVE TO!” he shouted.  “You MUST have a good breakfast or you’ll pass out during the show!”

“We will have a good breakfast,” I said.  “But, it won’t be these imitation pop-tarts, it will be real food.”

“I must see you eat it to know you had breakfast!  So, you must eat this where I can see it!”

“Tell you what.  I’ll open this pop tart and leave it on the ground here by this pile of wood.  If tomorrow morning any animal has taken even the smallest bite of it, I will have my people eat them.  But, if nothing eats them, then we’ll stick to our food.”

He agreed and we put one, unwrapped, on the wood pile.  Nothing touched it that weekend, and it might still be there 19 ½ years later…

At lunch time, we decided to see what food was available at the faire and looked around at the very small selection of vendors there.

Doctor Neo was selling sausages and pickles.  One of the other folks there was selling coffee.  That was it.  Of course, there were only six vendors, so a lot of choice was not expected.

A tried one of the sausages Doctor Neo was selling and reported it to be good.

So, we all queued up to buy one.

“You can’t buy these!” he told me.

“Why not?”

“They’re for customers!”

“We’re willing to pay full price for them.  We aren’t asking for them for free or even a discount.”

“I only have so many and I want to leave them for the faire patrons.  I have something else for the performers that you don’t have to pay for.”

He led me behind the tent to where there was a very big pot over a fire.  I looked in and it was enough chili to fill a small bathtub.

“The local Wendy’s donated it,” he told me.  “Tell all your people they can have as much of it as they want.”

“When was this made?”

“They dropped it off yesterday.”

There was a VERY limited interest in day old chili from our people.

Doctor Neo got mad at us when we went back up to our camp and made sandwiches from the supplies we brought with us rather than eat his chili.

Later that day he sent his assistant to fetch me.

When I went over he told me he had a surprise.

“I know your folks wanted the sausages,” he said.  “So, I have some for them.”

“Oh, how nice,” I replied.

“We burnt some too bad to sell, so we put them in the chili.  So, if they want them they have to get some of the chili to get them out.”

“Burnt sausages in the chili they didn’t want?”

“Send them over.”

No one was happy with this lunch.