“Look! It’s God!” the kids burst out as we rounded the corner into the sunlight and ran excitedly past the two 1,000-year-old rune stones.
I peered closely. I could see an older bearded man with sackcloth clothes, and a bowl and spoon chiselled out of wood by hand hanging from his homemade belt.
“No! Over there!” shouted the kids and pointed at a man in a sackcloth dress and bare legs.
We had come upon one of the many events celebrating the Vikings in our little corner of the world. The two men in dresses were, in fact, dressed as Vikings and they offered interested spectators a ride in one of their Viking boats. (Actually, these are copies of a thousand-year-old Viking boat that has been preserved in one of Sweden’s museums.)
My two kids, one of their friends and I clambered rather awkwardly into the boat. Everyone was set to work – even the kids – and we had to row out onto the lake using the very large, heavy, hand-carved oars. It was hard work! Finally, the cloth sail caught the wind and away we sailed on the glittering water.
We were the last ride of the afternoon. With tired arms and a happy heart, we waved good-bye to the two Vikings as they sailed off into the setting sun – satisfied that we had had a little taste of history that sunny afternoon.
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