Sunday, July 05, 2009

by Mary Kate Hurley

[Iceland -- the best layover ever]

One of the myriad things I'm doing this summer is researching Aelfric's Saints Lives in London at the British Library. Yes: I am actually consulting manuscripts, which is a new and exciting research prospect for me. I've been extremely lucky in terms of funding the trip: the Medieval Academy of America generously awarded me the E.K. Rand Dissertation Grant, one of several dissertation grants which they award each year.

Of course, I'll have a lot to say about the actual process of consulting the manuscripts (and I hope to blog a bit about Leeds, which I'll be attending next week, as well). But for now I have a quick question that I'd like to put to all you Norse specialists out there.

On my way over to London, I had a 10-hour layover in Reykjavik. Just enough time to trek all over the city (I was there mostly for the landscape -- museums and manuscripts are always interesting, but I was more intrigued by the land than the stuff from those who've lived on it), and then to head back for a short stay at the unofficial waiting area for Keflavik Airport travelers.

What caught my attention, however, was on the bus rides to and from Keflavik, where I found myself intrigued by these bizarre rock formations:

Now, I've tried googling them, and although I've found a few references, finding something specific about the structures is a bit difficult. So: anything strike you, dear readers? Some half-remembered fragment of a story from graduate school days past (long past or recently past...)? These seem like a lovely addition to the many other stones we've discussed here at ITM.

cross posted toITM