Once upon a time, I was a damn good High Priestess.
I co-HPSed a small coven with my once-and-future BFF, and if I do say so myself, we were awesome (until we weren’t). For a while, though, everything felt amazing – if you’ve seen The Craft, those early scenes of the girls in the woods summoning butterflies, that was us, though we were in our late 20s/early 30s, not teens. For a couple of years I really felt like I’d found my spot – it was a heady, almost high way to live, immersed in magic and surrounded by kindred spirits.
Early in our group’s life cycle we attended a small festival – since my first days as a Pagan I had belonged to a private organization we called the Tribe, the sort of group that would attend the larger festivals together and create a safe home base out of their camp, sharing meals and keeping our own fire going so that anyone too drunk or overwhelmed to deal with Big Festival Life could have a place to feel secure. Long after that incarnation of the group died out, the Tribe remained part of my extended Pagan family, and like most larger groups they held campouts on Beltaine and Samhain designed as a smaller and calmer invitation-only alternative to CMA and (now-defunct) PACT.