Dickens Faire Memories

The first full weekend in November always means the annual Dickens Faire at Bethel Church in San Jose. This yearly tradition typically kicks off the Holiday season. Rather than go into a lot of detail about it, I’ll just include the link to the information page. If you’re in the San Jose area, and you’re not familiar with the Dickens Faire, click here.

For a few years, I served in the kitchen. It was a chaotic place to be, but we always had a lot of fun. Grandma Bev running around in her “Hail To The Chef” apron and goofy socks, Aunt Jane and her famous Italian Chigole bread (oh, how I miss that! Oh, and Aunt Jane, too!)

And of course…Sticky Buns. (and no, that is not a reference to accidentally sitting down in spilled caramel.)

One of my favorite memories, and one which took on legs and still is present in my life today, is the day I decided to prank a friend. My good friend Tina was a senior in high school at the time. It was Saturday evening, and she stopped by the kitchen because just about everyone in her large, Italian family was there working. Tina was about to go out and do something fun, so she was dressed very nicely and ready to go. While she was in the kitchen, she left her purse unattended. Let this be a lesson to you. We were in a church, so there wasn’t much danger of it being stolen. But never leave your purse unattended when I’m around.

I decided I’d hide her nice Burberry purse somewhere in not-so-plain sight. When Tina came back to retrieve her purse, it wasn’t there. Of course, she ran around asking who took it and where it was. After letting her sweat it out for a few minutes, I returned her purse to her to many laughs and a playful punch to my arm.

Lesson learned, right?

Wrong.

Within minutes, Tina once again left her purse sitting there all by its lonesome. Now she leaves me no choice but to drive the lesson home.

This time, no mercy. I hid that thing so well, bloodhounds would have had trouble locating it.

Now, let me back up a second and give you a little background. I’ve never really had a nickname in my life. But the music director at Bethel has a little niche of taking names like mine, that end with an “ey” sound, and replace the ending with an “ence” sound. So Corey becomes “Corrence”. Barrie is “Barrence”. Terry = “Terrence”. This caught on to some degree, but particularly with this family. They love calling me Corrence.

Now, back to our story. When Tina returned to get her purse…and again found it missing, she knew there could only be one culprit.

“CORRENCE MICHAEL!”

What is hilarious about this is that my middle name is David. But Tina didn’t know this, and the moment didn’t provide her the luxury of asking before shouting her rebuke in what must be an instinctive “motherly” tone that women of any age possess. In her mind, Michael was the first name that popped up, and it just fit.

And thus, Corrence Michael was born. And to this day, I hear that name when I’m at my most fiendish of antics.

I sure miss my “family”! Have fun this weekend!

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