Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Masham Sheep Fair 2012

We went of a Saturday morning to the Masham Sheep Fair. It had been a rainy week (no surprise here in England) and the grassy field at the bottom of town where we were supposed to park was flooded. Luckily, the other side of town is higher up so we could park in a different grassy field and walk into town. Unluckily, Jacob was in a really bad mood and didn't want to be there. He told us repeatedly in the car on the way and as we walked into town. He was very upset.

We thought maybe a snack in town might perk him up. As we walked in we saw a lot of booths selling stuff and a lot of sheep waiting to be shown off.

The show in the shade

Sales booths

A pen of rams

Shaggy sheep

We found a tea shop that was open and my wife took the kids for a snack while I wandered among the sheep and shops.

Resting up for the big show

Very goat-like sheep

Showing their sheep

The big church had a flower show inside (cost £1 to get in, so I didn't, more from lack of interest than cheapness). Coming back to the tea shop, I discovered some Morris dancers performing just outside. A Morris dance is an English folk dance performed to music. These people had bells on their shoes or trousers that made them quite jangly. A Morris dance troupe typically dresses in similar clothes. No one else was wearing pink at the sheep fair, so they did stand out.

Looks like martial arts, doesn't it? Or maybe hacky sack.

Circling around

The kids came out to watch just as the group finished up. Jacob was still grumpy so he and I went for a walk while Lucy and Mommy followed the dancers to another venue. Jacob and I saw a spinning and weaving demonstration where some kids made a jump rope from twine. It was so fascinating, I forgot to take any pictures! We also looked at some of the sheep along the way.

Yes that is the right color for this sheep, a greenish-yellow (not pink)

Also not wearing pink

The other performance by the Morris dancers

I'm sad to say the video of the dancers doing a sword dance (with wooden sticks) did not come out well, so I have not included it. Also, Jacob's mood never improved so we drove home for lunch after getting lost on the way back to the car. We did pick up some items from the booths. Lucy found a pet and I got a new wallet (not sheepskin).

Our favorite type of pet--no maintenance, no mess

A new wallet with lots of room for cards!

We'll go next year and try to catch the sheep races and the sheepdog demonstrations and the Bishop Blaise procession (he's the patron of woolcombers) and the brewery tours.

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