Springingtiger's Blog



What’s the point of birthday presents if you don’t open them?…What’s the point of getting birthday presents early if you don’t open them early!

Last weekend was the Asylum Steampunk Festival in Lincoln and my younger brother and his wife who live nearby kindly offered to put me up for the weekend. I had a wonderful time (of which more will be revealed in other posts) and as I was packing to come home Jeremy gave me a birthday present to add to the contents of my suitcase. By the time I arrived home it was the day before my birthday (I may well moan again about Virgin East Coast in another post). I resisted the temptation to open my present. However the following afternoon when I awoke I could resist no longer and so I opened it.

I am somewhat self referenced and when I give a present it’s usually something I would like to receive. Jeremy and Beverley, on the other hand, had obviously put a lot of thought into giving a present appropriate to me. Firstly I opened the card, it was graced with a picture of a pug in a monocle and bow tie, wearing a bowler. Very promising as the gift itself was wrapped in paper with a bowler hat pattern. Within the wrapping I discovered a bag of Wasabi Nuts, a little Lincoln Baron, and a bottle of ‘Steampunk Gin‘.

Jeremy knew I liked Wasabi Nuts because I had mentioned it in conversation. He had not known I enjoyed Gin, neither did I until I opened the bottle to try it. However he knew I had been to a talk on the history of Gin and jumped to what was, fortunately, the right decision. Of course Gin has become an integral part of Steampunkery as Lady Violet Hugh will tell you (Lady Violet who? Ah something else for another post, a very funny, slightly off coloratura, soprano.) What can I say, I am no Gin expert? I can say it is beautifully bottled and tastes amazing over ice, which is the only way I’ve had it so far. The label says it contains ‘seven peculiar botanicals’, I bet they’re not half as peculiar as some of the Steampunks drinking it!

The last item was the mini Lincoln Baron. Last year to celebrate the Magna Carta Lincoln created twenty five statues in a medieval style of a baron. These were then decorated by various artists sponsored by different organisations and finally auctioned for charity they raised around £167,000 for the Trussell Trust. They proved so popular that thousands of mini versions for self painting have been sold. They grace many of the shop fronts in the town, appropriately painted, and are the perfect souvenir of Lincoln. I suspect mine will be Steampunked, indeed I’m already choosing which gear wheel will decorate his shield. A thoughtful gift both in its sentiment and the causes it supports. It will keep the memories of a wonderful weekend present for years to come.

Thoughtful presents. Presents that arose from my brother recognising the pleasure I derive from Steampunk and very thoughtfully offering me the accommodation that made it possible for me to attend the Asylum. So a big thank you to Jeremy and Bev!



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