sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Monday, August 11, 2014

Stones and Bones

A trip to the Viking Ship Museum.

The two principal viking ships in the museum were found in burial mounds in Gokstad (ship below) and Oseberg. They were almost completely intact. Without boring you with mendacity, they carried their occupants to the next life and gave us wonderful insight into ship construction and 'life' in viking Norway.



large tiller/rudder


A view of the Oslo Fjord at dusk. Sitting on a friend's patio, enjoying the experience.

It's a million dollar view- because most homes in Norway begin at about US$1M.
That not withstanding the view is spectacular. I should have done a panorama shot.


STONES AND BONES

The Vikings (TV Series) Season 3 Trailer



"I have no answers, only truths."  -- profound


22 comments:

  1. I envy your trip to see the Viking ship. Traveling on such must have been utter hell. Probably why they were always in such a crappy mood.

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    1. That may be why the berserkers went berserk.

      These ships are over 70 ft long and had excellent sea keeping capabilities. While I am not saying that they were a cruise ship with beauties in bikinis handing out mai tai's and aperitifs, I was very impressed with the general lay of the ships. These were not built with the use of a saw to plane lumber. I find that incredible looking at them, but apparently they were built with axes. Incredible.

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  2. Replies
    1. Trading and raiding. And though savage, there was such a cultural elegance to the process, such as it was. The Norwegians clung to rocky soil by the seaside and had a diet (fish) rich in protein, by which they grew large and cunning. When they set out, the world was not ready for them. They were the nuclear weapons of their day. When they saw the green fields of England (and later France) they coveted the rich land. It was that need for arable land that eventually sent them to Newfound Land and the Americas in those incredible boats.

      They lacked only hedgehogs...

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    2. "by which they grew large and cunning." This line cracked me up. I'm gonna find me a large and cunning man. I'll supply the hedgehog.

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    3. A wise strategy indeed.

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  3. Beautiful Viking boats, befitting warrior adventurers.

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    1. Brighid - a warrior shield maiden born 700 years too late to sail, raid, plunder and stand shoulder to shoulder with the men in the shield wall.

      You know, they found two women aboard the Osberg ship. It had been buried as part of the tribute to them. Nobody knows who they were beyond that. A queen and her attendant - thus runs the speculation.

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    2. I am humbled that You would even think me worthy...

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    3. Any woman who rides a horse like a Comanche and keeps a handgun in her boot just in case somebody gets fresh is certainly a candidate.

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  4. So it was real estate prices that drove them to Minnesota?

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    1. I suspect that and food prices. I spent $25 for a hamburger at TGI Friday in downtown Oslo for lunch.

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  5. I remember when we used those to get around. How about you LL?

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    1. Yeah, I hated rowing. Much better with a motor, a deck chair and an umbrella drink.

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  6. I agree with WoFat. Sailing in the open sea in one of those would still be pretty scary. They are beautifully crafted, though.

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    1. More scary if you had only a general idea where you were headed. The Vikings had steel balls that clanked when they walked. The English heard the clanking and usually ran. Average English soldier was 5'5". Average Viking was 6'3 and was much stronger. (spent life rowing - see comment to Odie above)

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  7. Very nice view! And taking something like that into the North Sea, yep, they clanked...

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    1. They were true sailors. A breed apart from those who sail steel ships and submarines...and fly over the water. I don't say that either was braver because it requires something to take on the ocean, particularly in combat. But for seamanship, the Vikings topped the chart.

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    2. Going to the bathroom must have been a real thrill. Ice. Yeeeeeeeeee!!!

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    3. Yeah, and while you're hanging it over the side based on a night-time need, a wave could sweep you into the deep and that, as they say, would be that..."the Gods took poor Olaf in his sleep"... I can't help but think that they would trail a lifeline over the stern to swim to and hold onto, but history is silent on that practice.

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  8. They are truly elegant watercraft. Astonishing!

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    1. They ruled the waves. And yes, the word "elegant" describes them perfectly.

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