Showing posts from May, 2012

On the waterfront

I was hoping to write a nice long blog about the 75th Anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge festival, which Palmer and I went to yesterday. But we got a late start, and Palmer was very tired, so we didn't stay long, and I ended up not taking a single picture. But I did want to say that the setting of the festival, on a grassy field right beside the bay, reminded me a lot of the setting of Ljósanótt in Reykjanesbær. And then there was a stage where local bands were playing, just like at Ljósanótt. And just like at Ljósanótt, the bands were complaining about it being too windy. There was also a parade of old cars at the festival for the Golden Gate Bridge, which reminded me of the parade of cars at Ljósanótt. But I must say, I had more fun at Ljósanótt.

Washington D.C.

Last night I bought tickets for Palmer and I to spend the 4th of July in Washington D.C. That is always a great time to be in "our nation's capital" and I think Palmer will get a kick out of the firework displays and the folklife festival. My former boss at the Smithsonian will be in Mongolia in June and early July, so he said we could stay at his house, which is right on Capital Hill, just two blocks away from the Supreme Court Building. So Palmer and I will be able to walk all around the Mall, see the monuments and the museums. It should be fun. This has got me thinking a little bit about when I used to work at the Smithsonian. I was hired on with special funds from the Nordic Council of Ministers, for the express purpose of working on the Viking exhibition, and started working there in 1997, just as they were beginning to plan the Viking exhibition. That exhibition opened in 2000, and toured around the U.S. and Canada until 2003. So when 2003 rolled around, the mone

Age appropriate literature

Today my son's father and I met with his teacher, the school principal, the school district psychologist, an administrative person, and a woman named Mrs. Hubert. Mrs. Hubert is paid by the school to run a program called "Kid's Connection," which has a curriculum she seems to have invented herself. I wish I had asked more questions about her, and about the program, before signing Palmer up for it. But when the school contacted us, and told us that Palmer was having trouble socializing with the other kids, it seemed like a good idea to try this program, which pairs up Palmer with one other kid, and then Mrs. Hubert teaches them to play nice together. I have now become a bit embittered by this whole thing, so I don't think I can write about it without it sounding a little sarcastic. From the bits of conversation with her today, I just got more and more of a bad taste in my mouth. Which is of course a very strange reaction, to this incredibly nice, matronly woman who


On Sunday, my family members are driving to see me, from many many miles away, so that they can be with me on Tuesday. That is the day of my graduation ceremony. I will be getting hooded as a Doctor of Scandinavian Languages and Literature. I have all the required medieval looking hat and robe and hood, in the official school colors. I may however skip the robe, and just wear the hat (called a "tam" because it is made of velvet and octagonal) and hood with a knitted Icelandic dress that my friend Koleen gave me when I lived in Iceland. She had found it at Goða Hirðinn. I'll post pictures here of the event. But today I am not in a very celebratory mood, because I received some rather sad news. In addition to my family, I had also invited a few of my dearest girlfriends to come to the event, but first one was disinvited after she broke up with my brother, then another was unable to come because she was called to a job interview in the midwest. But my friend Christine was

Helping Amanda

I spent today entering citations into Amanda's bibliography. Nan entered the missing book citations, and I entered the missing article citations. Well, as best as we could anyhow. It was miserably hot and stuffy in the office, and I have allergies from all the plants that are blooming. But now that I've heard it is snowing in Iceland, I will stop complaining.

Joseph Smith

Until this weekend, I had only driven through Salt Lake City. But on Thursday night I arrived here and was instantly struck by how clean and new everything is. It only took me a bit longer to notice how small-town chatty and nice everyone is. My colleague, with whom I am sharing a room, called me and said they had been super nice at the front desk about leaving a key for me, but then I started noticing everyone is like that. A girl walking down the street struck up a conversation with me, everyone smiles at each other. But the topper was tonight after dinner. I have had a slight headache the entire time I have been here, and am a tiny bit stuffed up and run down, so I was in no way in the mood to go out drinking with everyone tonight. Instead I came back to the hotel, and decided to get in the jacuzzi.  A couple was in there, and of course they started chatting with me all about their kids and how they were taking a romantic weekend get away. Then another couple arrived, and the fou


Back in 2004, I did some consulting work for Walt Disney's Epcot Center in Orlando Florida, at the Norway Pavilion. If any of you have seen the exhibit there, which highlights a few prominent individuals from the Viking Age with Norwegian roots, and didn't like it, you can blame me. It was my idea. Disney liked it though, which I guess is the point, and so they call me every once in a while to help out with other projects. Today I got a call to help out with a ride at the park, which is a particularly amusing opportunity, since it will be my first time working on something like that. So of course I said yes, whatever I can do to help I'd be happy to.  So now I am just waiting to hear specifics about when and what and where and how much.