As you approach the gates of Rastfull, the small village on the outskirts of the Pall district, the capital is only a days journey away. The sweet smell of roasted apple tarts and a spitted hog fill your nostrils as you weave through a swarm of dancing children, faces ripe with inked pastes in the shape of monsters, birds and mammals. A bazaar has been set up just inside the open gates with local sellers showing produce, grains and baked goods. A local man and his brother play a tune for some dancing farmfolk as preparations are made for the annual Green Parade – a celebration of harvest and thanks to Jaskil, the God of Crops and Harvest.
Okay, now that we have that out of the way, just take that paragraph and juxtapose our common holiday festivities into place. Thanksgiving for Green Parade, facepainting for ink paste, spitted hog for food trucks. Our celebrations are just as fitting for any handmade D&D universe as they are for ourselves, and I simply can’t get enough.
This weekend, we made way to Brantwood Farms to do a little harvest season applepicking and I had to wonder, do I so regularly notice the traditions we partake in because I do a lot of worldbuilding for fantasy games, or is this another one of those “everybody knows it but we all just don’t say anything about it” kind of things?
The farm itself was laid out with all the majesty of fall. From hay bales and miniature train rides to rows of apples, pumpkins and squash, ready for sale. We managed to grab a full 10 pound bag of Gala apples, our favourite. There’s something about the harvest season that brings out a particular flavour of happiness in us, different from the sensations we feel in spring or during the holiday season, it’s got a crispness to it. It’s inspiring to see so many young families about, taking in the cool fall air and lapping up the local treats from the bakers who’ve brought them to market. The pies being made in the main storefront at Brantwood smelled absolutely terrific.
Our morning was spent chasing a toddler through the maze of mature apple trees, and it couldn’t have been a nicer day to do it. Before the cooler weather pushes us all inside for the long dark, I’d tell you to hustle over to Brantwood Farms for apples and root vegetables, but stay for the festivities. It’s the community that brings us out and together, it’s what we really have to celebrate about.