This time last year I would never have imagined myself walking about streets in Brittany as a medieval festival takes place. Recently I found myself in Josselin, surrounded by people dressed in medieval clothing. Some slightly destroyed the illusion by wearing sunglasses or using their mobile phones. No I wasn’t totally transported back in time, never the less it was impressive. Some of the people did look a bit like extras from Lord of the Rings. Some looked decidedly Gothic. Some looked like they had been extracted from a freak show. There were fire eaters, stilt walkers, falconers, a man dressed in the attire of a bishop. It was a lot for my three year old to take in.
Everywhere you looked something was happening, you could sample strange musical instruments, food being sold at a premium that with recipes dating back to the times of knights and chivalry. The festival takes place every other year. I imagine it takes a lot of preparation, the setting including a large fairy tale like chateau with soaring ramparts and three mighty towers dominating the river valley below is awe inspiring.
Medieval times are not a period in history I would choose to visit, given the opportunity in a time machine, it conjures up images of death, pestilence, torture. It was mocked cruelly by Monty Python. Some people were very Pythonesque and I wondered what their usual day jobs were? Were these people Bank Managers? Or perhaps secretaries? All let off a leash to live out their fantasies.