As you may or may not know, I have not always been the captain of industry and king of all things technological that you see before you. In fact, once upon a time, I was a fish in an entirely different pond . . . the vast ocean of academia.
Whilst I was such a gill-bearing aquatic creature, I had vague visions of some day being a college professor in my own right; so the fact that I specialized in Medieval and Renaissance Warfare was . . . well, it wasn’t quite as ridiculous at the time as it sounds now.
OK, yes it was. But there were knights and they hit each other with swords!! That shit is just cool.
For my Master’s thesis (yes, you may call me The Master . . . no relation) I wrote fairly extensively on the topic of propaganda. Specifically, I compared two incredibly bloody battles and how they were perceived not just at the time but since then.
The first was the Sack of Alexandria which took place on the 9th through 12th of October, 1365 by King Peter I of Cyprus. A horrifying affair wherein tens of thousands of civilians were slaughtered in just a matter of days — but don’t worry, this isn’t a blog post about that.
The other was interesting for all sorts of other reasons. It was the Battle of Agincourt almost exactly 50 years later on the 25th of October, 1415 — during the 100 Years’ War (more like 116, but who’s counting?). Henry V, the King of England, outnumbered and vastly out-armed, defeated the French army in a complete rout. At the end of the battle, even though huge numbers of the French nobility had surrendered and given their word of honour that they would not re-take up arms, Henry (or his generals) ordered them executed on the spot.
So . . . why am I telling you all of this? I’ve already given you the important part. The clue, as it were.
The 600th anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt is coming up on the 25th of October. In fact, as of the writing of this post, it is less than a month away.
I’m a great big huge history nerd, so I of course thought that it would be awesome to go and visit Agincourt and be there for the actual day well over a year ago when we were in France during Wanderlust. It was my enabler of a wife who took that idea and ran with it, buying us plane tickets without me knowing, ensuring that we would actually be there . . . because I’m cheap and I’m not about to let tickets that expensive go to waste!
Of course there are all sorts of other problems with this. Like for example, my company’s ABSOLUTELY MANDATORY Grand Meetup is occurring right before the event, and so I’m having to duck out a couple of days early (thank goodness for understanding coworkers!). Plus there’s the kids. The weather conditions that allowed Henry to kick the French collective asses (weeks of rain and cold weather resulting in sucking mud) isn’t exactly conducive to bringing a toddler and an infant. This time thank goodness for patient grand parents!
The plan is that we fly in to Paris, spend a few days there (mostly seeing and photographing things that we couldn’t last year because: Malcolm). We’ll then take the train out to Azincourt (not a typo, btw. The place-name is with a Z rather than a G. To this day, I’m not sure if the reason why we call it Agincourt is because the English didn’t like the French spelling or what) for a couple of days around the anniversary. After that it’s off to London where the English are celebrating their 600-year-old victory with some museum displays and whatnot.
Then back to the US, where we will again start plotting some way in which we can permanently move to Europe. Because: Wanderlust.
P.S. A tip of the hat to my co-worker Dean, who asked for more information about my upcoming adventure next month. He turns *ahem*some age*ahem* today, so if you work with us, you should say hi to him.