Friday, May 9, 2014

Langfoss Waterfall. Human preoccupation with rampant nature; Myths of the Foss.

Myths of the Foss

Waterfall. Have to stop. Like volcanoes, or prehistoric sea column remnants on which old monasteries perch to avoid invaders, the sea stacks, enter waterfalls.  If we are not in awe, we are curious -- who lives here. What tales?

  • Find Scandinavian denizens of falling waters at  Huldra, lady troll; elves; dwarves; little friendly but prankish Nisser with red caps, or the other Nisse, with detailed characteristics, predilections, and difficult to remove, not prankish at all, see;.., the lady Marre who dispenses, forced bad dreams upon the sleeper; the handsome naked Fossegrimmen luring with his music; trolls; holdovers from the Black Death, like Pesta (who looks like the Scream); Nokken watching with his eyes just above water; Draugen ghost; the Kraken, or enormous octopus among other reported shapes;

Niagara, Langfoss. This great resource has been left alone: no hydroelectric plant.  Good.

Myths are right. These sights should give us pause. The fascination with waterfalls crosses all cultures.  So much water! No control! Watch it hurdle, crash, divert, split, reunite!  A waterfall is a metaphor for all politics, religions, human endeavors where the end result is beyond all of us unless we dynamite and dam something.

  • It is a splendid waterfall, right there at the road, worth of full stop; as any spectacle beyond our human making is splendid. And, driving, unguided, in Norway leads, we believe, to the same kinds of spectacular sights as any canned trip.  Driving is not for everyone, of course. But the sense of just waiting to see around the next bend, the next sign to something that may be spectacular (like the road sign to Vik, see posts), sends us back to different countries to do it again.

Langfoss.  No one view conveys the totality.  Stop the car.  Read.  Learn.  The huge size of the fjords, the huge size of the waterfalls along the way.  Perspective is lost on buses. 

The road, the E134,  runs along the fjord. Look on the other side: a great rush of whitewater, then still. There is the road, top left.

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