sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Gaining Context

Good Saturday Morning from LL's house, where breakfast is on the table. Why stop at bacon, eggs, pancakes and juice when you can also have biscuits and gravy? Not me, that's for sure. The context that we enjoy with others is comforting in the same way as a good breakfast is.

There is comfort in having others understand who we were when and why we are who we are now. Friends, relatives and people we meet in the journey of life (like the guys below - Kuwait 1991 just off the King Fahad bin Abdul Aziz Road, about 40 kilometers north of the Saudi border).

I encourage you to reach out to somebody you haven't spoken with for some time who knows you for who you were as well as who you are...and you with them. It's Saturday - what better do you have to do?

That's it, carry on. Nothing more to see here. I've been asked to judge a chili cook-off later today. I wonder how all that will sit on top of pancakes?

The Siren's Song

Are there really Seal People in the Faroe Islands?

Over the years, strong men from the small village of Mikladalur slowly disappeared. Killed at sea amongst the swirling waves of the North Atlantic, they tragically fell from fog-shrouded cliffs, drowned whilst fishing, or simply found themselves overpowered by the powerful storms that so often batter this region.

Their deaths are no accident. Instead, they are the result of a curse cast by Kópakonan: the notorious ‘seal woman’ of the Faroe Islands. 

The story goes that after years of being held captive on land, Kópakonan escaped and returned to sea, reunited with her husband and children. Years later, when the villagers murdered her family, she returned to land – angry and distraught. Here, in front of the village, she declared that the men of Mikladalur would meet unexpected, watery deaths, until so many had died that they could link hands around the shores of the island of Kalsoy.

With a thunderous clap, she vanished without a trace.

It's Lake Leitisvatn, not a photoshop job.
Today, all that stands in her place is a statue: the bereft Kópakonan, clutching her seal clothing. Windswept and alone, she is a reminder to the men of the village of the dangers of the ocean and the mythical magic of the Faroe Islands.

There is something wild and wonderful that happens when you go to distant lands if you are able to take the time and explore. Exploration requires patience that takes time to develop in some people. It's best to mute the cell phone and to walk, look, listen and try to connect with the place - and occasionally with the ghosts of the place.

There are lots of Ghosts in the Faroe Islands: Vikings, ice giants, witches, Scottish sailors, Irish monks and even a few remnants of the Cold War. 

The islands, located between Scotland and Iceland have strategic value when tracking Russian ships and submarines that are headed West from Murmansk and the Kola Peninsula. 

The water is cold but the hospitality of the place is warm and inviting.