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A Peek at the Freaks

In January 2003, I fell into the folk world by discovering Gogs (that's a long story in itself). These things seem to work, that you take up one folk thing and people keep suggesting you go to others until your diary has no room for any more. Being a student, one of the first things to be suggested to me was IVFDF and inspite of being fairly adamant I didn't have time to go, I ended up at my first IVFDF in Sheffield that year and got my first taste of Border in one of the workshops (no idea which team ran it now). It was in that workshop that I first heard about Freaks in the Peaks.

On getting back to Cambridge, I promptly joined their mailing list eager to give it a go and that's about as far as I got.

...until this year when all the Gogs got enthused at about it by Daisy and it suddenly occured to me that I should do something about the fact that I've been lurking on their mailing list for 6 years intending to go at some indetermined point in the future. The upshot of which was I finally went to one last weekend.

In some ways it's got a lot of the social side of IVFDF without the hecticness (although it was probably as tiring if not more so). On the Friday evening we met in a local pub and there was a bit of a session, but it was more just sitting around socialising and then we headed back to the village hall for indoor camping.

The Saturday started with a bit of a walk around the area with some of Stone the Crows whilst everyone else was asleep before returning to the village hall for breakfast. The morning then was run as a workshop teaching most of the dances to be performed over the weekend. The dances are fun with enough room to play around with them a bit when your dancing, but not too complicated so you can pick them up from the run throughs in the morning.

At some point during this I discovered what happens when you write this much about folk on here, when bessiebell correctly identified me purely from the mention of 2 sides I dance with. Presumably one of which must have been Thrales, but I don't remember. I was more taken aback by the "I dance with x, y...", "You must be Owen" of the conversation. Definitely seems to be the year for randomly bumping into LJ folkies.

After lunch we went and danced them all out at a couple of pubs in the village before heading back to the hall for a communal vegetarian (mainly vegan) meal for anyone who wanted followed by an informal session/dancing/sitting around/doing whatever took people's fancy until the early hours of the morning.

The weekend was rounded off with a walk around the peaks on Sunday with a pub/lunch/dance spot part way around.

Which nicely left me in an exhausted daze for the trip up to Penrith. I'd managed to hitch a lift up the M6 with bessiebell who was heading that way, but I can't have been the most riveting of company as I'd seemed to have completely forgotten how to speak English by that point.

All in all an amazing weekend, can't wait for January. If anyone else fancies coming along it's likely to be near Holmfirth on 29-31 January. After that they're off down to Cambridge (Granchester in fact) on 16-18 April. Details here or go here to sign up for their mailing list.

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