For those who follow my humble haven of all things vikingy and norse then you will have noted a week ago that I departed the blog and twitter realms for a long pilgrimage in the amazing real world for the annual and awesome Jorvik Viking Festival in the city of my birth YORK aka Jorvik :)
Well I have returned and although I didn't take as many pictures as I did last year I still have many a saga to tell of my adventures and encounters.
First off I attended a fascinating event on the last true Viking King of Jorvik - Eric Bloodaxe as Gareth Williams of the British Museum has released very interesting biography on this great character of legend and history which suprisingly little is known about for sure.
I learnt a lot considering all I knew was that he was betrayed and was a true Viking King of Northumbria, York beings it capital back in the day before England was actually England. For instance did you know that he's meant to have killed for one reason or another 5-6 of his brothers? In some Sagas he is one of 16-20 sons by Harald Finehair of Norway. The one thing that really caught my imagination was that his wife Gunnhild is not only meant to be cruel and manipulative of her husband Eirik but also is meant to practice Seidr - the female magic which suprisingly enough my Valkyires use. So I was more than eager and happy to not only snap up this book but also get it signed by Gareth himself. Being my first big author meeting with a guy who definitely knows his dark age history I was bit tooo shy to ask for a photograph, even more so as I was the youngest member of his audience, second youngest was middle aged people.
The second experience was the true highlight of my day and of my Jorvik Festival 2011 - meeting and chatting with my favourite viking author GILES KRISTIAN! But I didn't just meet him, I happily chatted to his wife and his lovely baby girl and his VIKING BRETHREN! As these photos demonstrate.
This below is the cherry on the cake as I kindly asked him to sign my festival programme, not only did he put it was nice to see me again but he also mentioned my hand designed and decorated norse cloak. HE LOVED IT!
Next part of the Festival was the Finale Battle and as my camera is rubbish at taking pictures at night I had to resort to using it as a video camera. So please watch the follow video clips and emerse yourself with me in this amazing experience of battle and entertainment.
The Vikings March into Battle
The Vikings vs Anglo-Norse of Jorvik
And that is about it for this year - next big date of viking madness - THE FESTIVAL OF HISTORY! Where not only will there be re-enactors from any time period imaginable but also GILES KRISTIAN (swoooon) and another favourite viking author of mine, he wrote the Oathsworn series, ROBERT LOW (THE ONE VIKING AUTHOR I HAVE YET TO MEET AND GET BOOKS SIGNED!)
And Yes I am already saving for it as it will be one expensive but soooooo worthwhile weekend spent travelling down to Northampton.
On a slightly different note, whilst I was away I planned out the events that I intend to occur in Soul Chaser Chap 8, 9 and 10! Looks like I've set myself up to do some writing perhaps *touches wood, waves at magpie and crosses fingers and wishes on a star*
Who knows what may happen after such an inspirational weekend of viking madness!