To the Romany people who visit this site,

I would like to state that this page in no way intends to disrespect the Roma, their history, their customs, or their sufferings. My hobby is that of historical reenactment. The Society for Creative Anachronism reenacts a period of history for enjoyment, and to learn about different Medieval cultures. Members are not restricted to personas that reflect their own ancestry, and I have chosen a Roma persona because of my interest in their history. I am aware that some of the photos on these pages reflect a lighthearted stereotype of the gypsy--the vardo, my garb, etc. Ours is a hobby. We reenact the best parts of the middle ages--the plague was period, but we don't attempt to contract it. In truth, the Roma of the time would often act these stereotypes themselves in an effort to separate themselves from the gaje. There are personas of all types in the SCA. The gypsies were just one of the many peoples who populated the middle ages. My persona is in no way meant to lampoon this particular group of people.

What may not be evident from these pages is the fact that I have spent a great deal of time trying to learn about the real Roma. I don't kid myself that I'm any kind of expert, but neither am I as unaware of the culture as I've occasionally been accused. I have done my best to learn about the Romany people. I always attempt to make others understand that the they weren't a bunch of silly fortunetellers who happily lived the lives they did, dancing and thieving because it was in their nature. I don't believe this, and I don't pass this misconception along to others.

My vardo website is just a photo album to show people a building that I created. I try to explain when I deviate from history, and why it was necessary, but I understand that I still can offend some simply by the fact that I attempt to recreate it. This is not my wish.

Rae Enslin


For information on the Society for Creative Anachronism, please visit the SCA official website