To begin the story at the beginning, read "Part 1: Post 1: Beginning Again," published in January, 2013. To consult a description of the campus, read "Part 1: Post 14: The Greening of Campus," published in March, 2013.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Year 3: Part 5: Lammas

Happy Lammas, slightly belatedly!

Again, we celebrated by having an outdoor feast and something like a talent show. Again, the festivities were inside one of those large event tents, though this time it did rain (quite hard, in fact), so the tent made more sense. Kit did not sing at all this time, though a few students did--most of the performance was given over to juggling, however. Allen performed, though he went neither first nor last--he is very good, but he does not consider himself a master juggler and so I suppose he did not want to steal the show from the others.

A new addition among the buffet tables was a taste-test for various herbs--seven different kinds of basil, three different kinds of thyme, four kinds of mint, that sort of thing. Each species competed only with itself, so you didn't have to choose between basil and mint, only among the different basils, for example. Each kind was represented by a fresh sprig in water, by one bowl each of goat cheese and walnut oil, each well-herbed. There was sumac tea as a cleanse  between tastes, and I think they'll grow the winners next year.

My first year here I noticed that at Lammas all the masters left the celebration early, around the same time, without saying where they were going. Last year they did it again, and I also noticed that several graduates came on to campus, but went to the Mansion without entering our tent or speaking to any of us. Presumably, they did something with the faculty. This year, I deliberately pokes my head out when I saw the faculty start to vanish, and again I noticed strangers walking towards the Mansion. Why? What do they do?

I couldn't probably find out. I could ask, and they might answer. I could snoop around and learn more than I know now, anyway. I could, for example, have follows some of the departing masters to see whether they really were going back to the Mansion, and if they stayed there or left campus together. But I'm not sure I want to know, if they do not want to tell us.

So much of the mystery of this place depends upon mysteries--strange things not fully explained, or not fully explained until the proper time. It's like a giant magic trick--it probably IS a giant magic trick. And it wouldn't work if premature snooping ruined the surprise.

I don't really want to become some passive person who simply accepts the unexplained without question--that seems politically stupid, for one, and anyway not very magical. At the same time, I don't want to ruin the fun. I suppose it depends on learning which type of mystery is which.

Speaking of mystery, Charlie told me not to sign up for any fall classes this year, though he did not tell me why. I followed his suggestion, of course--I don't need many more credits, and there are plenty of short events, workshops and talks and so forth, I can take instead. Most carry credits. He also implied I should get as many hours in at both the landscaping company and my on-campus job as possible, so maybe he's planning something time-consuming for later and wants me to spend the time now working, to get ahead?

Whatever it is, I'm excited about it.

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