Thursday, May 03, 2007

Walking with dead Vikings

I've done a lot of things in my life, but I have never hung out with dead Vikings before. I have now.

We stopped at an old Viking cemetary in Denmark by the fjord. I cool is it that I was able to say fjord in such a casual way - as if I've been wandering around them for years? Pretty neat, huh?

Anyway, back to the Vikings. They were pretty rough and tumble back in the day, but they're much quieter now. Perhaps it has something to do with being dead, but I like to think they've just mellowed a bit.

I'm sure you're probably thinking that I'm making up the whole Viking thing.

Maybe you're thinking, "Hah, I've caught you in your web of lies now Shawn...I saw that movie with the Vikings and they get sent off in flaming ships, not buried!"

Well, I can assure you that many off them did indeed get buried. I've seen it with my own eyes. Plus, the signs told me so - or they would have if I read Danish, but it was pretty obvious that they would have told me that all the little piles around the field with big rocks on top were Viking graves. They would have also let me know that the rocks were arranged in such a way as to represent a ship - or at to appear to be a shiplike rock to the trained and perceptive Viking eye.

It was really a neat place and made you think about how little we've actually changed in the last thousand years.

The thing about dead Vikings though, is that they don't really talk much. So, our conversations were a bit doomed from the beginning. It might have been the language barrier, or maybe they had a hard night the night before, or maybe it was just that they were - well - dead.

Despite that, I would definitely recommend going to hang out with some dead Vikings if ever you're in Denmark.


tshsmom said...

COOL! I'm a live Viking(NO, not the football kind!), only Norwegian. Only the rich Vikings, that owned a ship and died bravely in battle, were sent off in a burning ship. Quite often, they were buried in a mass burial mound. Scandinavian farmland was rather scarce, so they didn't like to waste a lot of space on graves.

Joe said...

so Shawn's walking around with the poor, cowardly vikings . . . still pretty neat. Eric the Red or Eric the Yellow - vikings are neat.

The Zombieslayer said...

To make it more authentic, you'll need to play Yngwie Malmsteen's "I Am a Viking."

Don't worry about zombies there. Their brains have decomposed long, long ago.

SME said...

My mom beat me to it. I was gonna say that only well-off warriors got pyres at sea. Everybody else was just wormfood.

Vikings are a lot quieter now?! You need to visit Minnesota more often... ;D

I bought a children's book about Vikings for my stepdaughter a while back, and it has a groovy fold-out boardgame at the end, with spaces labeled "Rob a trading ship. 1 point!" and "Party with Friends, lose 1 turn". I always landed on "Attacked by Skraelings, lose 1 life".

Shawn said...

Vikings are cool...and who knew how many different kinds there were?

The Swedish ones pillaged into Russia. The Norwegian ones went to Greenland, Iceland and North America. The Danish ones baked a lot of fruit-filled pastries...wait, no...they conquered a bunch of Europe.

One weird moment occurred when a big tall guy in biker's leathers and sporting long, flowing hair emerged out of the woods and over a small hill. It wouldn't have surprised me to see him draw a broad sword or an axe.

SME said...

The Vikings live. Cool.
The Danish variety conquered a bunch of Europe, then went home and baked fruit-filled pastries. Vikings were nothing if not well-rounded.

Shawn said...

Some of those pastries are frickin' great too. I had an incredible carmel filled pastry that was to die for. Vikings rock.

tshsmom said...

OOOOOoooo caramel!!
If caramel is a Viking trait, I'm all over it! ;)