God‘s bless Ya!!! – These are the stories for the show, when you come to see us you will experience the amazing music and song that these tales introduce; you will hear Alda!
You will also see the stunning Goddess costumes created by Alda Raven‘s sister Sigrún Björk Ólafsdóttir as an integrel part of our show featuring myself with Alda and our stunning models we present costume, music, song and story for a Goddess experience.
These costumes will be woven into the story by our talented actress / models as they were at our showcase event for Jelling Mythological Festival.
The Creation Of The Cosmos – Before anything there was nothing but darkness; the black abyss of emptyness: Ginnungagap.
Yet far far away to the North there was a land. A cold unforgiving land covered in frosty black ice, with a freezing fog that slept on the land with sharp icy thorns. This was Niflheim. A world of frozen hell-like misery and darkness.
Far south of Ginnungagap was another land; Muspelheim, and it was a complete contrast to Niflheim. This land was a burning hell hole where lava-demons and fire giants spew flying fire-balls into the air like shooting stars of death.
With time the lands of fire and ice got closer and closer until one day the fire balls shot so close that the ice started to melt – drip drip drip.
The creation of the universe
From a giant’s bloody corpse
His blood filled up the oceans
The mountains are his bones
(For the fuller version of the above – Come and see the show!)
Water of the well of Urd is carried by the Norns, the destinies, to nourish the ancient tree. Here, where the gods gather each day in council, reside the three Norns, the women of destiny. Dressing the tree, they heal its wounds, they advise the gods and they twist and shape your lives. They look down now; Urd, Skuld, Verdandi. Fate, being and necessity are but twisted twine to their wise eyes. Bringing new born creatures to the worlds, casting monsters to the deep, they peer and see what you deserve, judge you by your inner thoughts to turn your wishes into deeds. These fine three weave the threads of your life, twisting, tightening, loosening, colouring, blanding, paling – they are shaping your lives, wild and exciting or bland and drab; you had better hope they favour you, but not too much.
As the three wise old Norns weave the threads of your life far above upon his great high seat sits the All Father himself Odin, looking out with his one eye, from here he can see everything; the nine known worlds and all the other worlds as well. Upon his shoulders sit the ravens, Huginn and Muninn; wisdom and memory and he sends them out into the world where they decide what is important, remember and return to whisper in his ears. As they fly he worries so, for he sees many dangers.
They fly over Sif. She is stepping out anew from her chambers for the first time since the evil Loki played such a cruel trick on her. He cut off all her hair! See her now as beautiful as ever, as beautiful even as Frejya. Pure gold her hair. Fashioned by the Dwarven smithies with their magic it grows each day and brings her riches.
The ravens saw the cruel deed and now Loki seeks them, in his eagle skin he flies high and is yet another danger for the ravens. Odin loves them both yet favours Munnin, he worries so and wishes their return.
Beware, for here walks Goddess Skadi, wild huntress of the far north. Beyond the blue crevasses, far over highest mountains, far beyond the loveless lava-flows, there is her abode; where stones crack, there stands her towering halls upon dark rock heights. For the full Skadi story see – God’s Bless Ya!!!! 01
Look to the skies, for life is a battle and a goddess is looking over you, Brinhildr the Valkyrie. Her winged helmeted deities fly over you seeking who to choose. And if they choose, as the raven would eat the heart of the victim so they will wish for your heart. They wish for your death. We wish to be chosen, for we are glad to die, we want to die, we laugh at death. We wish to go to Valhalla to feast and fight forever. Choose me. Choose me.
Brinhildr tired of this way, of being perfect and she wished to breathe and be mortal and truly alive for a while. She threw off her shapely armour, her warrior attire. In Freyja’s swan-skin she flew down here. There by a lake she threw off the feathers and dived lady-naked into the
waters. A man stole her feathers. She was trapped. He would let her go if she would change the fate of a battle for him. She looked down from a hill upon a huge field of armies and she chose his enemies to die.
How Odin was enraged to hear of this; he cursed her.
“You are cursed!” “Cursed to die into loveless sleep forever.” “Encased within a ring of fire.” Odin cursed Brinhildr and she fell into lovelorn sleep. He entombed her, just as she was, upon stone, within a tower, upon a mountain, he surrounded her by jagged rock which he set to flame. In this burning ring she would lay.
The dragon slayer was riding that way, Sigurd, with his curse ring of death in his pocket and his other booty from the slayed dragon’s hoard. He rode upon a horse which was afeared of nothing. This horse leapt from the top of a mountain, across the sky. It leapt through the flames and through the window, to land beside the stone slab bed. He dismounted and touched her upon the shoulder, as soon as he did he was deeply in love. It was this love which woke her. She opened her eyes and looked into his. Their love was to be forever. As she rose up he fell to one knee and placed the ring upon her finger.
Born of a giantess who loved the unfaithful-one she was taken away because of her monstrousness. Hel’s mother Angraboda was bound in her sleep by the Gods who despised her, and so hated her daughter. Hel is a putrid thing, half dead half alive. See the full Hel story at God’s Bless Ya!!! 02 …awaiting the battle, the final battle to end all battles where everybody dies: Ragnarok is coming and you dark-hearted ones are ready, to rise up, rise up, rise up…
The next God’s Bless Ya!!!! blog will be all the footage, pics, dates and links so venues can book us and for people who want to book to come to see us.
And for the last word on the matter (for now) this lovely letter from Sigrún Björk Ólafsdóttir:
It has been an absolutely incredible journey and the 11 days spent in Denmark were nothing but amazing. There are so many highlights that it is impossible to simply choose one but one thing they all have in common is the incredible group of people I have been blessed with meeting during this trip.
This was the first time that Adrian Spendlow, Alda Björk Ólafsdóttir and myself worked together like this so it was reassuring to learn that we work really well together and are all on the same wavelength. It will make our lives easier as we continue to work on the full show God’s Bless Ya!!!.
If it hadn’t been for the generous and hospitable people of #Jelling Heritage, Flemming Midtgaard, Ole Grangaard Olesen and Bjarne Taudal @ #CafeSejd, we wouldn’t have been able to experience this amazing journey so to them I’ll be forever grateful and they can always rely upon my support and friendship. I’ll come back anytime they want me!
The same goes for the wonderful photography and modelling team. Jimmy Frisk turned out to be an absolute diamond who didn’t just take amazing photos of both the opening ceremony and the God’s Bless Ya!!! show but he provided the perfect locations for some nature shots, drove the team to the locations, provided images to display my creations with the mannequins at the week-long gallery show, provided images of the girls getting hair and makeup done which was donated by a hugely talented and brilliant team at #FrisorLyhne (thank you Marie!) but he also provided us with lots of laughs and support throughout the week.
We also could not have done all this without our stunning models Eydís Ósk Jóhannsdóttir, Anna Csukás, Tine Nyborg Jensen, Emilie Johansson and Tanja Thomsen Andersen who took to their characters with passion and made me proud that such stunning girls want to wear my creations. Each of them got to know their characters and took active part in the creation of them. We were also very lucky to have Egill Egilsson on-board with us as he tirelessly helped to sort out models and MUAs and who made a long journey for the opening ceremony, just to be a part of the team and took fantastic video footage, not only from the actual ceremony but he interviewed the girls, documenting this mind-blowing moment where the 3 Nordic goddesses and their Valkyrie Warrior Maiden, walked down the stunning old Viking UNESCO heritage mound. What a moment! How privileged are we to have the opportunity to do something so amazing! It humbles me. I cannot wait to see the final product he produces! He also took some fab photos during our shoot and I am grateful for his support and contribution.
On a personal level, the time spent with Perry Stenbäck was very precious to me and I would have wanted to spend a lot more time with him. It is hard to catch up with 30 years in a few short moments but even more precious is the new memories made. To be able to hear his band play at a random house in a random place was nothing but fantastic and I strongly urge everyone to check out #Bragr on YouTube. Even better was a proper Danish lunch that he prepared for us in his magical forest house where we ate some beautifully prepared Danish Smorebrod (I need the recipe for the remoulade and the svampthing) and were introduced to some award winning Danish ales. I personally really liked the liquorice ale! Yumm! This was the moment when we then got to hear him play the old traditional Swedish Viking instrument, #Nyckelharpa. There is something very magical about meeting an old friend and realising that although 30 years have passed, their fingerprints were embedded in your heart for a reason and that you will be friends forever, no matter how time passes. Perry – I love you.
A very sweet moment was getting to know Eydis and her twin brother Jóhann Pétur Jóhannsson. I had never met them before but they are my little cousins and from the moment I met both, I felt as if they were mine to hold and to protect. I guess you could say that motherly love came over me and I am ecstatic over having been able to spend some fantastic time with them, getting to know them – and finding out that they are so much like us that the family DNA cannot be denied! My family just got a bit bigger and better and my heart has two new fingerprints on it.
I was also left deeply humbled by the fact that 5 members of my family, Esther Gudjonsdottir, Joi, Ingvar Jóhannsson, Ragnheiður Hallgrímsdóttir and Guðjón Jóhannsson who live in Iceland, made the journey across the water and came to support us. These beautiful humans, whom I am proud to call my cousins, have supported me throughout my creative process and provided me with materials I would be unable to get if it wasn’t for them. It is because of them that I was able to create Hel’s headpiece for instance. I cannot thank them enough for believing in what I am doing and for their support. I love you all!
The support we received didn’t stop there. Mum Svanhvít Erla Hlöðversdóttir and Dad Ólafur Þór Tryggvason and Andres also flew over to offer their support and again, I am utterly humbled! I owe so much to these 3 people. Andres has provided me with a space to work to create and cut patterns, he has tirelessly been available when I needed him and he has sat at a sewing machine and helped me sew when the task of these outfits in this short space seemed daunting.
My mum and dad have given their all in support to these creations and my mum has spent weekend after weekend with me here on my patio, teaching me the craft of tailoring and sewing in a way that she was taught by generations older and so forth. She is an endless fountain of knowledge and her patience whilst I stumble, make mistakes and have to re-do tasks – again and again, never faltered. My dad, never complaining, has been at hand at all times to drive back and forth, fix my dishwasher, set up a cover so we wouldn’t get rained on whilst sewing outside, installed a watering hose outside for me so that I could save time watering my plants and when the sewing machine fell apart, he, with his engineering genius, sat and repaired it until it was as good as new. The fact that these 3 were able to see the show that they have so much a part in, was the sweetest gratification there is. This was their show. I can never thank you all enough!
As part of our show featuring myself with Alda and Sigrun Bjork Olafsdottir and our stunning models we present costume, music, song and story for a Goddess experience.
Here are poems inspired by Lady Hel herself, ruler of the dark lands of the in-valiant dead followed by my narration for the cat walk and the stunning Hel costume designed by Sigrun is elegantly shown for us by our talented model displaying for you to the unique magic of Alda’s composition.
The Hel Poems
Warning; Enter if you dare – here is contained the Viking history of belief in death, suffering and hell.
Read on only if you are of strong mind, will and maturity.
Ride beyond Modgud the bandaged and bleeding one if brave enough to cross her chasm path.
See eyes in the dark as growls rumble; guard hound Garm will let you in – yet will never let you out: see fire-eyes, hear blood drip as you slide by.
Hear forever screams from the long long long drop of the worthless as you leap the abyss.
Hel Poem 01 – What is Done Can Never Be
Born her of giants,
their shape-changer essence perverted her form
Until she matured monstrous
Living and dead
Rotten and luscious mixed
Yet somehow alluring
Attracting you into her power
Commanding in presence
She pulls you into her will
You forever admire
Beg to endlessly serve
Wise Norns spoke of the danger of her
Born of beings of evil
Begatted by badness
The evil pretender god
With the hulking death volva
She was destined toward greatness
Forever be fearful
Hel Poem 02 – Kenning
If you wish to share,
Hel is just down there…
Hel poem 03 – Go Now Down
To where the cursed one fell
Ride nine days down
The north beneath the north
The world beneath the worlds
Hel’s citadel in hel,
Built forbidding from her mighty will
The darkest of powers of construction
Power out of destruction and death,
Here recreated from dread essence
Built of bitter cold,
The unending nights very core
All that remains of the dust of suffering
These her tools
The falling screams
Welts poisons spray cements and bonds
Take not your toe nails with you long
Naglfor is rising in the rising sea
To fly to war, to death of all
Oath-breakers island over rivers of spears
Living serpents bind and twine,
to bite the liar encased within
Niflhel her misty hel
Her towering walls are thrusted
Meer strength of will these gates forbidding built
From living witches buried deep
There grows the putrid plants of undead sustenance
Hel built all this
From dastard whim
Hel Poem 04 – Enter Forever
Doors open for you
To cavernous hall
Countless faces turn to you
Slowly the new dead turn grey face
The rotting and green see you
Further in the darkness,
are the less flesh than bone
Hear a drip drip drip
Watch your footing as you walk
Welcome to the land of the dead
Of the waiting
Lives of the countless
The pitiful, the unanswered,
The resigned and the scowling
Here are the leering, the most treacherous
You are stared at by the murderous
Feel if you can for the agonised
Beyond them the angry
Eyes only for you
Speak not to the dead
For then they can all speak to you
All, all at once
In their many moods and wishes
Many broken sounds.
From her glimmering veils of misfortune
She steps dangerously forward
Mottled and mouldering
Be caught in a tear fall forever to have seen her
To be doubt-filled, untrusting, contrary to the full.
This is a testing, so beware her
Let all weep for your passing
Or scream silently forever in living hungry death
Shades in the shades see you
She holds the very god of light and beauty in her power
Your tears melt the rime, these are meltwater tears
Beware her lest she summons her father
In his shape-shifter form he will remove all your hope.
She has you under her power
Will feed and keep you, all bedecked in gold;
those of you who see yourselves witches or herbal
Prepare to whimper under deep dark earth buried forever
You are summoned
Weep till you weep dry tears
Hel Poem 05 – Witch Burier
Rust Red the cockerel awakens the dead
There is one who has not slept
Alive she is buried
Buried by Hel,
Daughter of Angraboda, born in Jotenheim
Here in Niflhel she buried her witch mother
Aware under there
So she Angraboda will know forever
That she is dead
Summon her from the earth if you dare
She will answer three questions
Yet all she wishes is,
to return to her dark earthen misery
She will take you with her too if she can
All she needs to know is your true name
Down you will go
Hel Poem 06 – You Cheater
If you spat in barrel,
and then broke your word
Then yes you shall go to her
Are you a liar?
All oath-breakers travel to her
Worst of the worst is the unfaithful
That is a promise which must not be broken
Meer human you have faults
So hence you will go to her
You know in your hearts
You are unfaithful; a liar
You cheat and you steal
And the tower awaits you
Step now though the waters
The icy waters of the river
The fast flowing river
Forged only of frozen
Each of the ice parts
Is formed as a spear head,
A seaxe or a dagger point
Bleed as you scream as you wade
Do not hurry though
For a torture of forever is waiting there
A tower of serpents
They will bite you forever
They will burn you with poison
Forever is forever
Oh how you will scream
Hel poem 07 – To Dream of Hel as Balder Did
Escape dark shapes in nightmares if you may.
For she will call for you
And oh yes, you will offer to go
As now each night in readiness she grooms
She brings you the despicable. Yes,
Gasp and moan. Be in half light, turn grey.
Whitening to the emptiness of the whitest weed
Feel not the sun’s warmth ever,
even when you walk awake
Seek deeper sleep…
Shadow skulkers shapeless now
Ghostly skull guests creep
Monstrous forms will snuff you
Thrash and kick all you will
Oh hope your screams will wake you
The lingering feelings will remain:
Naked doomed fear has grasped the living
As she was hurled into mist and darkness
You too now yearn for the world beneath worlds
Odin’s curse Hel wishes to share
are falling and falling
Hel (Prose) Poem 08 – Half Dead She Will Kill US
In her home beyond the sheer rock, she still hears the curse words,
“Share all that you have with the dead, adorn them in gold and feed them your putrid foods”
Her brother encircles the world.
While her other brother above bound to earth howls to be rescued.
One day her father will howl out in agony with hope in his dark heart that his offspring shall aid him, vengeance will be theirs together; Oh yes.
Capable of great structures, dark creation, from dark materials.
She has a ship readying, a dread vessel filling with undead.
Her Man-servant Ganglati and Maid-servant Ganglot they move so slow as not to be seen, until they are upon you; like weeping dark angels of stone.
She eats from Hunger with her knife Famine thinking only of the moment.
Sleeps in Sick Bed, her bed curtained by Glimmering Misfortune.
She dreams of the death of us.
Vengeance shall be theirs, Oh yes.
The Catwalk Talk
Born of a giantess who loved the unfaithful-one she was taken away because of her monstrousness. Her mother Angraboda was bound in her sleep by the Gods who despised her, and so hated her daughter. Hel is a putrid thing, half dead half alive. They cast her to Hel as her home down below us. As she fell and fell through the misty dark gloom the words of Odin echoed through her. “You are cursed, in your half-rotten half-beautiful self you are fitting only for death, live the forever death building cities for the dead.”
As she fell, as she landed, as she built, she swore her revenge. Oh how the world will end. Her great halls are filled with the myriad dead, only those fallen, who lost badly or while running, none of the brave go there. Die well my friends or you will join her. She looks at you now and feels the lies in your heart, the fears from your dreams and she knows. Your twisted dark desires glow out from you like a punishment, you have it in you to be one with her. For yes Hel is beautiful, entrancing, but once in her power when she turns to her other side there is the putridness you will worship forever. Oh yes, she knows. She knows you will be coming to her, you will feel the call in your nightmares and then forever in her halls hungry and bitter, awaiting the battle, the final battle to end all battles where everybody dies: Ragnarok is coming and you dark ones are ready, to rise up, rise up, rise up.
As part of our show featuring myself with Alda and Sigrun Bjork Olafsdottir and our stunning models we present costume, music, song and story for a Goddess experience.
Here are poems inspired by Skadi the huntress goddess followed by my narration for the cat walk and the beautiful Skadi costume designed by Sigrun is elegantly shown for us by our talented model displaying for you to the unique magic of Alda’s composition.
Skadi 01 – Follow Her Way
Thrymheim – storm-home
Beyond loveless lava flows
Where ice burns
Beyond the burning blue crevasses
See her icy fury
Pale eyes growing cold in rage
Vengeance upon murderers
Stars of the father
look upon the just and fair
Be safe with Skadi
for as long as there is night
Her kind wildness in your heart
Skadi 02 – Finding The Warmth
Let love of winter lands
Bring firm cool flesh
Breasts and belly proud and smooth
By the cold
Yes fresh is best
All the better to fire the pulse of man
The beat of the heart
The stand of the man
To find and join at last
With the inner secret warmth
Let flow the icy breath of ecstasy
Skadi 03 – Free Will’s Arrow
Goddess of the victim
Bringer of justice
Rights of the underdog
Skadi will make you strong again
Watch for the buck’s run
Or the burst of icy waters
The stag’s breath
Be quick of eye; back on target
Laugh with all your heart
A giantess among women
The stars shine especially for you
Go where you will;
Free to love
Or free to love life alone
As and when it suits
The huntress in your heart
Beware, for here walks Goddess Skadi, wild huntress of the far north. Beyond the blue crevasses, far over highest mountains, far beyond the loveless lava-flows, there is her abode; where stones crack, there stands her towering halls upon dark rock heights. Here she oversees the winter. Looking across the worlds of men and gods and darker beings. She sees you. She watches, ready, so beware, Skadi: judging the harsh, the cruel and the killer. She is your guardian dear victim, if you have been painfully treated you can call her spirit to you. You, yes you, she is here for you today. For she would stand against gods. Let her father’s eyes the stars look down upon you from the blissful dark.
Snow-dweller of cool firm flesh she has an inner secret warmth that she would share if you have the heart to be as free as her, yet how she loves, let old man Njord of the noisy sea dare to climb with her above the scree and ice crags, his beautiful feet clad in woven shoe, and he will find a young heart within him when he lays with her. Yes, she has joined with the oldest element of fertility, the ruler of the very winds, the tides; his currents flow as young as ever now. He brought her bounty and she brings bounty too.
Be swift of eye when she is with you, watch the buck’s dash and let your arrow fly. Let men wish for your darts of command so they may be with you for just one night. Let the toxic sharks dangle on your hook with forlorn hope, that they may be reeled in to breath the ice-cold air of redemption. You who brings in the wild goodness and embraces the gleam of low light that shines through the sheets of blue and yellow and silver ice. Let tall battlements be nothing of obstacle to those who know what is fair and just, for strong will be the icy rage if your Skadi-heart is not listen to with expected respect. Stand and face gods and Giants you follower of Skadi you.
Brave tall peaks of the impossible with her beside you for she brought laughter from the gods for all the worlds to be giants of reckless joy.
We are thankful now. For your wildness, for your beauty, for your joy, for your strength of heart and keen arrow. Skadi, we thank you, thank you Skadi.
And here is my Poem of the Goddesses, I have blogged it before but as it covers all the Viking Goddesses and the empowerment they bring you I thought it was worth you having a look see here. Besides, it just might give an insight into the future for Sigrun of just how much sewing she will be doing as our show grows and grows!
More on this below but you may have seen this hamper before, it featured in my (highly entertaining) Christmas blog. I have opened it since. The results are shocking.
We shall also be roaming through Ireland, Finland, Norway and a few other spots via intriguing pictures of the past.
Here first though is me!!!!
Yes this is quite a while back. The inscription on the back states; Adrian on the front steps of Farberry Garth Farm near Warter Priory where Nana and Pop lived.
Yes we lived in Warter.
So did these guys by the looks of things.
The coracle, this old picture from the west of Ireland shows how portable these boats were, although the old text says they were used for fishing in rapid-running rivers, I think perhaps they would be put to much better use in stable waters. It also says that ‘Caesar’ adapted them for his Iberian campaign. They are much older than that, , well into pre-history I would say. These pictured where said to be made of split birch and canvas, I am sure over all leather would have been the most used surface.
The photos here (with the exception of the Bunty pic) were taken between 1890 and 1935. There were no credits with them and some are rather grainy, I felt they would be of interest to reenactors, costume makers, historians etc.
Of interest to folklorists too. This one intrigued me. We are still in Ireland. With some sort of rebel gang, which is now largely forgotten: The Straw Boys…Yes the straw hats were a disguise as well as making them look terrifying, what scares me most is that they would dress in women’s clothing.
I am reminded of the Cat People, much feared in Celtic lands, but not now recalled who – or indeed what, they were.
Now this one, clearly, isn’t from way back then, as I have just painted it…
In fact it is a blatant attempt to get you to read more of my blogs by clicking the link through to my Viking Comics Inc. Graphic Novel written with older school children – Oski and the Amulet.
(Do come back here though! The best is yet to come.)
We are off to the Pyrenees Mountains now, for a folk dance. The rather disparaging text says, that as well as a flute and a violin, the piping chap also played a primitive form of wire piano struck with a piece of metal. Hang on! He is playing both at once. The ‘flute’ is some sort of one-hand pipe and the wired thing looks like a wonderful old traditional instrument. I want to know more! I want to hear theses guys (and I want to hear whoever sang with them!).
We are off to old Esthonia now.Wonderful old costumes. I wonder how much of this is recollected and still worn today in the form it is here from over a hundred years ago.
We are looking here at style of dress from the Petseri district; Unique costumes were popular on the many islands around the coast too.
Come to think, I want to know more about such people’s lifestyles and interests.
Now this feller told stories…Nebulous shapes of a bygone age weave and drift from the telling of this Guernsey teller, who went so far back that all of it was true. All of it was believed in the moment of telling, for there are things to the world which are other than we know. If only we knew now; perhaps if we go to Guernsey there will be someone there who remembers him, and remembers his tales.
His companion has clearly shifted all that straw in the huge bale behind her. I note she has a hay bailer rather than a pitch fork, if my memories of the days I would sit on that step and watch the Wolds farm workers are correct. For it has two prongs not three.
I am transported now to Russia. I am planning to do a blog on strange and quaint sayings and proverbs from around the world, and my favourite is perhaps the Russian one I read:
‘Beware of pitchforks, for they make three holes’ – Discuss.
He doesn’t have string round his trouser legs though like Awd Mr Bott.
Off we go now to the Sheep Islands, better known perhaps as the Faroe Isles. It says in the blurb from over a hundred years ago; ‘belonging to Denmark’, is that still the case?Described back then as an optimistic people, I hope they are all feeling as jolly now. I particularly like the feller’s hat – can you still get them?
(The shoe fastening style is of interest too.)
Is it time for a break from the black and white?
Yes!There’s mum all dressed up ready for another adventure. There is the car! They got stopped everywhere they went – by curious coppers.
For those of you who are into the details of such a thing, it is a Mini sub-frame with a boxed steel outer frame welded on and a single wheel axle at the back. They went everywhere in it.
Oh yes and plywood.
Back to black and white. A totally different place to the Faroes, but just as flat – Holland.And yes there are flowers on the whip. It was their wedding day you see.
Northern Holland we are in (perhaps that is a bit steeper). What you do is, you drive around all the local villages with your engarlanded whips and throw out sweetmeats (as we used to call goodies) (as we used to call chows) (as we used to call sweets)… As you might call candy. Phew, we got there in the end.
When we arrived at the end of the Forth Bridge (they still haven’t built the fifth one) Dad still had all the takings from the raffle he had ran the night before. As best man at a wedding he was informed of a similar tradition to above. This was the sixties, so I am not sure if it still goes on. He was told they had been collecting coppers (great big pennies and ha’pennies) and gave him a bag full. He was instructed that as they drove around the villages he had to throw a few out whenever he saw children congregated. So he thought, ‘Well, I’ve sent a cheque (‘check’ in the US, if you still use them), so I might as well add in all this silver’; tanners, bobs, two bob bits and perhaps a two & a sprat or two. IE quite a lot of money.
Gosh what an uproar there was. Never forgotten. They still discuss the generosity of Yorkshiremen up there.
(Between the third and fourth bridges somewhere I think.)
(One of my little geographical jokes there did you see?)
They have even stranger customs in Finland…And I have no more to say about that.
This isn’t an island…
But Stromo is (please add your own two little dots to the top of the last letter O).And these are the Stromo girls.
Apparently Faroe was one big island till Norway went and dropped a bit of it’s coast by mistake. See Geographical joke no. 1.
After that Thorshavn was the central island of 21, 17 of which were inhabited just over a hundred years ago, (Is that still about right for nowadays?).
These girls where described as speaking a dialect version of the Norse (Is that still the case?)
I like the different headress thingies.
It is Bunty time.
I used to steal my sisters Bunty comic as soon as she put it down. mainly because of the cut out dolls – free in every issue.
(Note the little tags – that’s what it was all about.)
But shock horror…
Well, shock horror 01
I opened the hamper.
I opened the comic. There wasn’t a cut-out dressing up section!
I read the comic.
Shock horror 02.
I read it.
Well, I only read the front. It was enough.
How horrendous! How funny it was back in ’84. Oh Bunty chats so. In she comes to the lesson on first aid. Oh how she chats. Nobody can learn a thing. Then Teacher has a great idea. Bandages wrap like this, she ties Bunty’s arms and legs to the chair. Band Aid sticks like this; she clamps shut Bunty’s mouth. Oh how they all laugh. Learning first aid and gagging and tying up the over chatty Bunty all in one lesson., Ho ho. Ha ha. Ho oh my god, have we changed that much! Its only thirty years ago.
Let’s run away to Sweden.These happy Leksand girls were described as well-built and prepossesing. It is a shame we cannot see the multi-coloured nature of their aprons. I also think their hats are really cool.
This one said they were disappearing.The Lapps that is. I don’t think they did disappear, but perhaps the tents did. It is described as a Kota and I want one.
There are plenty more to come in the future, but for now, here is the last picture of this edition. I like this one.It says that the Hardanger people are staunch advocates of the femine orthodox garb. It also decribes them as modern Norwegians. There is a suggestion that this is a farm house; although it is noted that the old log cabin farms are few and far between as they are being replaced by farm houses built of brick and stone – I haven’t seen too many of those either.
More from me soon. I am always glad to receive input.
I thought the next edition of this series might focus on the Americas and Australia.
But my next blog will probably be favourite quotes, so do please send some…