Wow, what a fun, exhausting day that was! In my last post, I told you how we (Mom, Melody, Auntie and Pauline) were invited to participate in shooting a commercial for Calico Ghost Town. Well, we headed out very early on Thursday morning to pick up Pauline and make the long drive out into the desert. It was projected to be 97 degrees that day and we knew it would be very dry, so we took plenty of water and juice for Melody.
When we arrived, Mom and Pauline finished arranging our dresses, we sometimes drive with certain pieces off so we don’t wrinkle them terribly, and Melody tried on her new dress! Pauline had made the most adorable little dress with plenty of room to grow for Melody. It fit perfectly, though the elastic in the wrists was a bit tight so we took that out. Anyway, we met the others at the Lucy Lane House and Museum. There were two other groups of reenactors in addition to us, so about 25 people. Everyone was VERY nice. The other groups were part of Single Action Shooting Society (SASS) I believe, and all dressed in 1870-1880 attire. The dresses were quite lovely.
Shooting a commercial, I found means hurry up and wait. A lot. We were told to meet at 9 a.m. and that shooting would begin at 9:30 sharp. Well, it wasn’t until about 10:00 that the TV people noticed us, lol. While we waited, a pair of gentlemen serenaded us with fiddle and harmonica. Finally, they had us all go up to Lil’s Saloon. Now, at first I was a bit disappointed that we wouldn’t be in that scene, but I realized it would be a stretch to explain a toddler in a bar, so it was going to be just fine. They had “proper” women in the bar, and we all know that even in a little mining town like Calico, proper rules of society prohibited “proper” women from entering a bar, let alone sit down in one and play cards! Heaven forbid!
Next, they had a bunch of us go over to the train ride and we were treated to a ride on the Calico mine train. There were about 4 actual tourists on the train with us as well. I think they wanted a shot of people enjoying their visit to Calico. Melody LOVED the train ride, but not quite as much as the wagon wheels all around town. She really wanted to run around, and thankfully there is very little traffic in town (we saw one Fed Ex truck and the electric carts the park rangers use). She was able to have a tiny bit more free reign than usual.
One part she did not like was the “everyone walk toward each other, greet, then keep walking…repeat” shot. They split us into two groups and had us walk slowly toward each other, greet one another as we passed by, then keep walking. Again and again. Really we only did this three times I think. But, Melody did not want to walk slowly and greet people. She wanted to look for the wild cats that live behind the photo store.
Once this was all completed, we rested for a while and had a drink of water. Then we rested some more. Then we had some more water. Then we rested some more. THEN they had us go up toward the school house…and we rested some more. Like I said, hurry up and wait. Finally, we obtained the key to the school house and went out to open it.
Just as we opened the door to the school, a group of children on a field trip descended on us. Of course. The filed into the school, I put one boy up on the dunce stool, and Pauline and I looked at each other as if to say “now what do we do???” It was hilarious! To us at least. We didn’t know what to do with these kids, but they really looked eager to learn, so Pauline and I were just pulling trivia and little tidbits out of thin air. We had one girl come up to the black board to solve a math problem calculating the volume of a wagon bed. Shortly thereafter, Pauline was asked to play schoolmarm with some of the children. Through this all, Melody was keeping Auntie very busy romping around, climbing in the little desks and trying to escape. Once the children filed into school three or four times, the TV guy came inside the school to film Pauline “teaching” class. Melody and I sat in the closest desk to the front and Melody was filmed for quite a while. Pauline picked up the first book she put her hands on that wasn’t too modern, opened it and started reading. It was a very, VERY, dry essay on fish or reptiles or something like that! But, she is a good actor because she lost her place a couple times but no one knew it. It wasn’t until later that she told us; I had no clue. The final shot was the three schoolmarms and Melody leaving the school.
What a fun day! Melody was very tired and drank so much water I’m amazed the poor little thing didn’t float back home. We had lunch at the Calico House restaurant, then headed on home. She didn’t get much of a nap that day, and so went to bed early that night, but bless her, she was in a great mood the entire time. She loves being the center of attention, as you well know! I’ll post pictures and video tonight.