Dear Princess Diaries,
So, I'm going to let you in on a secret: this Royalty gig comes with a lot of "stuff". Crown boxes, and thrones, and largesse, and regalia, and and and...
But, even with all this new stuff, it turns out I still have this Chatelaine Soapbox kicking around here.
You see, I was the Chatelaine for my local group, the beautiful Shire of Quintavia, for several years. I resigned when we won. In fact, I resigned by text at 2am to my wonderful (and long suffering) Seneschal Sir Matthias Grunwald with the following message:
"Dear Matthias, I quit. Love, Princess Fortune"
But let me tell you, I firmly believe that each and every member of the SCA is a Chatelaine.
And while recruitment is very important, I also don't want us to forget about retention. Those friends we had at events for years who had an attack of life and haven't been able to play, have you reached out to them lately? Even just a "Hey friend, thinking about you and it made me smile". Letting them know they are welcome back.
Or have you reached out to the new person in your group who moved here from another kingdom and invited them out for a coffee (your Princess's favorite beverage) and to hear their stories of their home group. Letting them share their experiences before telling them what our local customs are.
Or have you reached out to the parents of toddlers who would love to go to an event but the task seems gargantuan when they think about wrangling their kid solo while one partner goes to the Thrown Weapons Range and who will help them if one kid starts crying while another wants to run toward the shiny swords!?!? Have you offered to help co-parent? Or offered to help them set up a tent area for the kids so you can sit and chat next to it and catch up?
Or have you just talked to someone new at an event for a few minutes? Maybe they aren't a newcomer but they are a new face. Ask them about their cool belt pouch, or where they got that awesome hat? Are they having a fun event? Did they try *insert awesome Dayboard item here*? Talk to the arts person who has displayed incredibly intricate embroidery, and the fighter who just won the tournament, and the fencer who... Ok maybe not them. 😉. (I love my fencers, I also love teasing the fencers)
But cross pollinate, talk to folks outside your circle and make connections. It makes us a stronger Kingdom and a stronger Society.
And with that, dear Princess Diary, I'm going to tuck the Chatelaine Soapbox away for a bit and try to organize more "Princess Stuff" getting ready for April 6th. I hear Mom and Dad have big news for Ôzurr and I. (I hope it's a kitten!)
Love and Gilded Kisses,