Interviews, Camping, and Swordfights, oh my!

Hello everyone,

I must say that this is the first time in a long time that I’ve felt a sense of enjoyment of the summer.  This is the first summer passing as a man.  I feel more myself every week and it’s fantastic.

I went to Moorhead, MN for the job interview and it went very well. I’m expecting a call back sometime this week.  My current job is going okay, but it’s undergoing budget cuts this month. Initially, my plan was to put in my two weeks notice after I hear back from Churches United, but because of the budget cuts I may actually just leave sooner.  (Everyone’s hours have been cut at my current job. Yikes).  My move date is still up in the air.

After Memorial day I went camping at Cross Ranch State Park! I had a great time! It was exactly what I needed. I had been struggling with appetite and after my walk it came roaring back. I made chili and campfire sweet potatoes.

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Beautiful twilight


Later in the evening I made some tea and Jiffypop. While sipping my tea and munching on popcorn I watched lightning bugs dance and heard the coyotes sing while junebugs lazily buzzed along.
I was feeling very happy and sleepy when suddenly I heard a twig snap…
I turned around with my headlamp on and stared straight into two glowing eyes that stared back at me.


Turning my other flashlight on I saw the silhouette of what appeared to be a raccoon. I shine both flashlights, thinking the bright light would startle him, but he fearlessly kept walking towards me. I know Jiffypop really makes it a party…but I wasn’t anticipating these kind of guests. I walked away from camp quickly and turned around to capture a picture of those eyes.

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I’m really amazed that I managed to capture this moment.

I went to my car for a little bit and when I returned he brought a friend with him. Two trickster raccoons indulged on my popcorn! After about 45 minutes they moved on. I wasn’t even done eating yet to put anything away. These guys just invited themselves right in! I was nervous because of how fearless they were of people, and I was worried if they were rabid. I also didn’t feel comfortable confronting them which could not always go as planned. I figured they’d leave eventually. Looking back I suspect that previous campers must have fed them, making them think that all humans are safe to go near.
At 3am, those rascals returned!  I did not have anything outside my tent or car, and they finally meandered off…probably to find more snacks.  Next time I’ll be better prepared. I read that if you sprinkle around your camp some cayenne pepper that helps deter them, among some other humane methods.

Although I had a rough night of sleep,  I had a really splendid morning with campfire coffee and the sunrise.  I can’t wait to camp again!



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Today I enjoyed an event called WHAM, which is Western Historical Arts Martial (They spelled it that way to create a better acronym).  I’m very happy that I went to an event where I knew no one. I felt anxious but went anyway.  I was still really quiet and spent the majority of the time observing. I sparred a little bit with some of the foam swords.  There’s a HEMA (Historical European Martial Arts) practice group in town that will be meeting next Sunday.  There’s also some SCA, and Dagohir groups in Fargo-Moorhead and I think I may check them out when I’m moved in down there.  It could be a fun hobby, something new.  The clash of cold steel is a very satisfying sound.

It feels so good to just put myself out there and enjoy life.

Until next time,
Ravn Thor

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