First thing of note: my birthday present from L - a very nice cane, possibly made from Holly, for use in La canne Italianne. Considerably lighter and faster than the Hickory jobbie I already had, so much playing with that. L and I engaged in some twirly fun, making fools of ourselves, but it was enjoyable all the same, and good practice.
Free fencing with S next. She's coming on very well, and getting far too difficult to hit. Hurrah! Pause for a while, while the instructor took S through some Smallsword vs Backsword techniques, and then L and S did some free fencing. I was hoping for a rapier session, but the instructor hadn't brought those along, so we settled for some Smallsword vs Backsword freeplay. Using the actual steel is very different from the singlestick, but fun. It wasn't entirely authentic, since I was trying to parry the Smallsword blade, rather than break it, but still, a good laugh.
We then retired for more beer, and I got my second present from the group: a new singlestick. Hurrah! my current one has been through the wars a bit, and is covered in masking-tape bandages. It can't last long now. At least now I have a backup ready to swing into action!
The following beer session was enjoyable, helped by not being allowed to buy any rounds, on account of it being my birthday (or possibly on account of me now being officially Old, and not trusted with complex load-bearing tasks).
Now, of course, I have to worry about getting up for work in the morning. What's the point in that?