17 June 2012 (Sunday) - The Psychic Fair
I'd been planning for today for some time. I'd been offered the opportunity to run a stall at the local psychic fair where I could flog some paintings. And so (after a lazy morning) off I went.
What does one expect from a psychic fair? A clairvoyant helter-skelter? A carousel which foretells the weather with uncanny accuracy? A roller-coaster that gets messages from "the other side"?
My hopes weren't high when I saw Tony Lemesmer (from the "Alan Partridge" show) starring as one of the psychics. And my hopes fell lower when I realised that (at least) three of the psychics had stooges sitting with them to make it look like they were busy to entice the punters to form queues.
It wasn't just psychics at the fair. There was a lady flogging crystal healing paraphernalia. I thought it was rather ironic that she was on crutches, obviously in pain, and couldn't walk more than a few yards before needing to rest. And I actually laughed out loud at a particularly stout chap who was flogging a herbal weight loss product.
The spiritual healing was quite interesting. Young ladies got to lie on a couch, got covered with a towel, got touched up, got told what Arthur had felt, and got to pay ten quid for the honour. And the punters were just as bad. I was particularly impressed by the one with the word "colostomy" tattooed on her forearm. I was also warned about the vicar of the local spiritualist church who was trying to recruit psychics to his flock.
There's no denying that I went along expecting the worst.
But it's easy to be cynical. As the afternoon wore on the joss sticks had been lit, and there was gentle hippy music in the background. The place had a very soothing aura. It was so relaxing just sitting and watching the world go by.
I couldn't help but be nosey and listen in to the reading which was going on next to me. Whilst I couldn't say that the chap had completely foretold his punter's life in every detail, he certainly had hit several chords. His punter was moved and impressed, and hadn't actually given away any clues. Another reading finished with the punter amazed and the psychic in tears.
There were quite a few people along this afternoon. Apparently attendance was down on the usual turn out because it was Father's Day. But those who were there went along knowing in advance what they wanted. The psychics and healers did a roaring trade, as did those selling crystals. I had a lot of people interested in my paintings, but time and again people said that they hadn't brought any spare money, and asked if I would be at the next fair. It would seem that the punters knew in advance what stalls would be there, and had brought exactly enough money for what they wanted. Quite a few people took my card and I had an in-depth discussion about a possible commission.
Financially I didn't get rich on the day. By the time I'd paid for my pitch I was actually down on the deal. But I'm not discouraged. As we were setting up I got into conversation with a chap who told me not to be upset if I didn't sell a thing, and if I took over two hundred quid I shouldn't expect that next time. Apparently (financially) some fairs are gold mines and others are deserts.
There's another one in a month's time. I shall be there.....