Viking Solstice

“Behold!”, said Clöst Aerfrök, the Village Elder.   “It is the Midwinter Solstice.    The shortest day of the year.”

“It is a time for reflection and thankfulness, for having survived another year”.

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Indeed, winter was a quiet time in the village of SmelBaäd.   The Invading Season was over.   The drakkars were battened down,  and docked until spring.
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Food was stocked from the previous summer.   Warriors got to sleep in.   Children amused themselves playing their Viking games.

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Even Ursaäl was down, for his long winter nap.

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There was little to do…and Vikings, being what they are, grew restless and short-tempered with their all inactivity.    The men were sent outside to cool off to prevent themselves from slaying each other (or possibly their wives from slaying them).

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With energy to spare, they started to pile snow.   Soon, it grew into a wall, and the wall grew into fortifications…
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At the end of it all, they had created a magnficient snow-castle, the likes of which had never been seen.

“It’s beautiful!”, they exclaimed.   “It’s stupdendous!”

“But what shall we do with it?”

“I know…!”  said Bjorgolf the Berserker.   “Let’s burn and pillage it!”

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And so the Vikings did.

They picked sides and staged a mock battle that the entire village participated in.

With mighty battle cries of “NYARRRGH!!!” ringing throughout the day, the snow-castle was pillaged and (somehow) burned to its very foundations.
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The ruins burned well into the night, around which the village gathered to celebrate the Feast of Yule, beneath the dancing Northern lights.

And a good time was had by all.

THE END.

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32 Comments on “Viking Solstice”

  1. Amy Says:

    Such a festive tale… Or shall I say “tail” since the donkey and a pup (Basil’s cousin?) are involved? :-)

  2. Friar Says:

    @Amy

    Could be Basils’ cousin. Basil is a Labrador Retriever, and the Vikings were among the first to settle Newfoundland.

  3. Vicki Says:

    I laughed out loud at this, made my Hubby and Youngest read it. They didn’t get Clöst Aerfrök. Woot for us, sad for them.

  4. Davina Says:

    These are great Friar. Your blog is SUCH a breath of fresh air.

    I love the one where the men are piling the snow and the battle scene. That dog looks smarter in this post too. He just does,heh,heh; looks like he’s barking out all the orders. There’s so much going on in that battle scene; these Vikings have technique even at the height of destruction and chaos.

    My fav tho is the last one, the Feast of Yule. Gorgeous blue sky, northern lights and awh… a cutsie little couple with their arms around each other… bliss, until somebody farts. :-)

  5. bandobras Says:

    Thank god someone had the sense to celebrate the solstice and the inevitable return of the sun. Of course it was the Celts that started it, but just as long as someone did it’s ok.
    Now if only the christians could find a way to celebrate the world as it is instead of waiting for paradise after death.

  6. Friar Says:

    @Vicki
    Heh heh.

    If I ever turn this into a kids’ book, I might have to change Clöst’s last name. :-)

    @Davina
    I got the farting and burping out of my system, with the last Viking story.

    @Bandobras

    Yup…the Vikings got it. They knew how to celebrate life.

    I bet you their Yule Feast was a lot more fun than being trapped inside a building listening to people sing Christmas-Carols off-key!

    The one is more family-oriented. (Relatively…)

  7. Seestor Says:

    Oh geeze, what a swell feel-good Viking story of pillaging.

    Burning snow forts … too funny. ;-)

    I’m glad to see see that they elder krones are wearing mittens (for the most part). Much more realistic than that other cartoon about Frosty … You live by your word (for the most part).

    I’m not ready for Christmas (for the most part).

    Seestor

    Merry Chistmas Eyeteaguy and Friar Followers.

  8. Brett Legree Says:

    I think the drakkar is shivering :)

    Awesome…

  9. Friar Says:

    @Seestor

    Yes..handling snow and metal weapons is NOT fun when it’s below zero. So I made sure the Vikings all had mitts.

    The only one going sleevless is the Berserker. But he can do that…because, well, he’s a Berserker.

    @Brett
    Poor drakkar. (Though it should be grateful that the Vikings don’t set fire to it).

  10. Brett Legree Says:

    Yeah, I felt sorry for it.

    It reminded me of the look Walter gave me this morning when I walked him at 5:15, I think he had ice on his whiskers…

  11. hannah78 Says:

    Funny, I’m just hearing a story on the radio right now about how people in a small Swedish town build a large wooden goat every year around this time and every year some dumbasses burn it to the ground.

    Nyarrggh!!

  12. Kyddryn Says:

    Friar, you are a hoot!

    It’s nice to know I celebrate yule in good company.

    Shade and Sweetwater,
    K

  13. Friar's Mom Says:

    @ Wee Friar,

    My curiosity led me to google “Viking Solstice” and there you were at the top of the list. Imagine school kids doing their research assignment via Google, and quoting The Friar.

    I also discovered in http://skandland.com/vikxmas.htm that we borrowed much from the Vikings. They celebrated the Winter Solstice for 12 days in Scandinavia, and hence, origin of the 12 Days of Christmas.

    At Solstice, the Vikings honored their Asa Gods with religious rituals and feasting. They sacrificed a wild boar to Frey, the God of fertility and farming, to assure a good growing season in the coming year. The meat was then cooked and eaten at the feast. This is the origin of today’s Christmas ham.

    During the festivities they burned a giant Sunwheel, which was put on fire and rolled down a hill to entice the Sun to return. According to one theory, this is the origin of the Christmas wreath.

  14. Friar Says:

    @Brett
    Poor Walter! (Though sometimes he acts like an arsehole, jumping and chewing on us….maybe this is payback time!) ;-)

    @Hannah
    Nyarggh!

    It’s good to see at least some dumb-ass traditions are still being kept. :-)

    I bet you that is one big party town, though.

    @Kyydryn
    Half of what we celebrate this time of year is borrowed from the Vikings anyway. (See Friar’s Mom’s note, below).

    @Friar’s Mom
    Gee? Google put me at the top of the list? I’m flattered!

    Seems you and I think alike. That looks a lot like the article I checked out before writign this post.

    Glad to see my blog is encourageing others to think and conduct their own research. ;-)

  15. Eyeteaguy Says:

    That was an awesome Christmas present.

    Thanks, I really needed a laugh, and your drawings are amazing.

    Even if you only get 20 comments, mine is worth 150 if I like it.

    Eyeteaguy

  16. Friar Says:

    @Eyeteaguy

    Wow…that comment made my day.

    (And I’m being sincere this time!)


  17. This just in…..EyeCritiqueguy….. two thumbs up for Viking Solstice!!!!!

    :O

    Did something freeze over????


  18. :))))
    Love these Friar, Just love them.
    Happy Holidays right back to Seestor and Wee Friar’s Mom.

  19. Friar Says:

    @Janice

    Not only did something freeze over, but a certain type of porcine barnyard animal has started flying.

    Glad you like the cartoons, though. ;-)

  20. Davina Says:

    @Janice… heh, heh… if something HAS frozen over I’m pretty sure those Vikings can burn and pillage it. :-D

  21. Friar Says:

    @Davina

    Just shows you how motivated those Vikings were. If they put their mind to it…they could set anything on fire.

    Nyarrgh. ;-)


  22. Don’t I remember Wee Friar’s Mom telling us about your early experiments in pyrotechnics, Friar? Odd things YOU would look at and somehow think hey what if I…..??

    And I tweeted and facebooked this little tale. :))

  23. Friar Says:

    @Janice

    My younger brother Spalpeen and were both pyromaniacs…though Spalpeen a little more so than me.

    Suffice to say, we kept Friar’s Mom on her toes! ;-)


  24. Sure blame it on Spalpeen. Convenient those siblings.. LOL.

  25. Spalpeen Says:

    I am highly amused by your burning snow castle.

    The only things missing are 1) a warrior apprentice with his tongue stuck to his sword, and 2) the scent of Polo.

  26. Karen JL Says:

    Good job Friar. :)

    Happy Holidays to all the other Deep Friar-ittes and thanks for this little corner of the web where we can all come and be bit of a sarcastic goof.

    (And I think EyeTeaGuy has been watching too many heart warming Christmas specials or something. Hell has indeed frozen over.) ;)

    Cheers, Guy.

    Merry Boobs for all!

  27. Friar Says:

    @Janice

    No, seriously, when he was younger, my brother Spalpeen would give me a run for my money. Hard to say who was the bigger idiot at the time. We tag-teamed, and got my poor Dad’s blood pressure through the roof.

    @Spalpeen
    Perhaps a snow-pyramid?

    I mean…nobody would EVER start a fire in a snow-pyramid.

    @Karen

    Thanks for showing up all year…your comments from the Peanut Gallery helped derail many a blog post, and turn this into the fun open forum that it is… ;-)

    And I think Eyeteaguy’s heart grew THREE sizes today…and he got the strength of TEN Eyeteaguys…plus two!

    PS. So…you still HADDA bring up boobs?

  28. Karen JL Says:

    What would Christmas *be* without boobs? ;)

    Hey, I got part 1 of a cool interview I scored with the Head of Story at Disney. Check ‘er out. I’m all giddy about it.

  29. XUP Says:

    I wish I were a Viking now. That sounds like a fun and wonderful way to spend the winter. Great story! And Merry Viking Soltice to you.

  30. Friar Says:

    @XUP

    Those Vikings lived up north full-time, they knew how to adapt and have fun!

    Merry Viking Solstice/Midwinter Yule to you too!

  31. steph Says:

    I love these posts of yours!!

    PS. I went to midnight mass this year, and lo and behold there were two teenage boys snickering at the sounds the choir was making, the carols, their mom having a sneezing fit because of all the incense, offering peace, etc.

    Of course I thought of you.

  32. Friar Says:

    @Steph

    Were they laughing at the “Gitchi Manitou” from the Huron Christmas Carol? :-)


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