Hey, it’s part three of our shameless pageview grab, The Bushwick Sagas, about three young men who travel to Iceland and write about their experiences in the delightfully antiquated form of the Icelandic Sagas. Enjoy! (Read parts one and two.)
III. Splendid Slumber and Local Delicacies
There are certain places in the world where, at certain times of the year, the sun provides only late-rising, short-term accompaniment. This is a well-known phenomenon deserving of much praise, for it encourages tired visitors in such lands, particularly those who have recently conducted as well as dutifully celebrated a surprisingly well-filled period of primary exploration, to remain deeply dormant for longer than usual to catch up with the potential emptiness of days. Pál Able-Tongue, Rykkí of Archives and Daustyn the Composed discussed this matter and agreed that it was an enchanting, perhaps occasionally dangerous thing to reacquire.
Once the rapture of sleep had loosened its hold, which happened only as the sun whispered softly ‘séð þig seinna,’ the voyagers engaged in several casual saunterings about town to partake of latter-twilight human crossings and bracingly caffeinated evening liquids. As they did so, and as they subsequently sauntered further, a casual reckoning of ideas took place.
Pál Able-Tongue, Rykkí of Archives and Daustyn the Composed had all prepared themselves for their journey by reading and absorbing the spirited intrigue and occasional ultraviolence of many fine sagas. They had each laughed many a time and shed many a tear thanks to tales such as the Læxdala Saga, Grettir’s Saga, Groenlendinga Saga and Eirik’s Saga, and they felt that they had learned the histories and lessons featured therein quite well. Talking about these stories helped them to regain consciousness and composure; even Daustyn the Composed benefited therefrom.
They also discussed matters related to desired culinary exploits. Reflecting on the various sorts of creatures he hoped to consume, Daustyn the Composed stated, “Where applicable, I prefer that my meat not be fully cooked, for my threshold is such that I do take chances.” He also discussed the marine fauna he hoped to consume, at which point Rykkí of Archives had much to say. And so a great deal in fact was said.
This was followed by an early evening return to the hospice to relieve certain bottles and glasses of their variably encumbering contents. This was done with great efficiency, and as such the next egress from the temporary homestead, in very good if not also significantly better humor, took place almost immediately.
Pál Able-Tongue, Rykkí of Archives and Daustyn the Composed made their way to the harbor, where Daustyn had heard legendary things about a certain small, somewhat partially hidden locale where sea creatures are freshly caught and expertly prepared for consumption. It was a quaint and welcoming place with many gloves, nets, photos, hooks, barometers and moose-topped hygrometers hanging from walls and ceilings. Thick rope decor was also plentiful, and all these adornments appeared to have once been used.
Lobster soups were had and skewers of huge hunks of monkfish were grilled and served. So enjoyed were these items that some partakers were speechless, while others, namely Rykkí of Archives, had a great deal to say indeed. And so he said a great deal about the texture and subtlety and delicacy, and maybe even something about the imaginable fortitude of monkfish flesh, the details of which will not here be recounted in full. Fellow diners from Liverpool agreed with it all. Pál and Daustyn talked with these kindred journeyers extensively and productively, learning important things about this fair territory in which they all found themselves welcome foreigners.
In the meantime, Rykkí of Archives picked up a magazine and flipped through it curiously, then furtively. Later he would abscond with it with a feeling of guilt, yet it was a free publication in the first place. Back at the dining table that seemed to be made of driftwood, something that was once very highly valued in this land of sparse arboreal umbrage, Pál Able-Tongue could be heard saying something about umlauts in words and how “one must make them sing soundly their subtle sadness.” He might have been saying this to himself. Daustyn the Composed attended patiently all this.
The traveling couple from Liverpool prepared to leave, mentioning that they would in fact be leaving Iceland altogether by the next moon. Pál Able-Tongue, Rykkí of Archives and Daustyn the Composed saluted them with great cheer. And so they left while three lone travelers, in the seafood shack, remained.
After the seafarer proprietor, whose kind visage suggested something markedly saline, walked by the dining table twice more than necessary and gazed frozenly each time, the three patrons began to sense him working his will. Moments later, his lovely and able daughters arrived to wipe down everything surrounding the three patrons, then surrounded the three patrons with tabletopped seats. Pál Able-Tongue offered his assistance in their physical labors, but they giggled and declined. Then the seafarer proprietor, having perhaps overheard a certain accent that has signaled various things over the decades, arrived to ensure that his daughters received no further entreaties.
And so Pál Able-Tongue, Rykkí of Archives and Daustyn the Composed left the establishment and wandered about the harbor beneath the increasing depths of night. They glimpsed ships and skiffs, oars and booms, portholes and a great many moorings.
As they made their way back to town, they passed the building that houses this great land’s parliament, the Alþingi. An open gate leading to the rear garden seemed to harken to them directly, and so they followed its call. They approached slowly and entered cautiously. No one took notice so they stayed for some time and documented their presence with images; once an image was forged that met the approval of Rykkí of Archives, they themselves forged on.
Forging on led to bars, one of which was particularly warm and stout. The local bjor, called Viking, was flavorful and smooth. Stories were told and good times were had. Rykkí of Archives claimed, “If I worship anything, it’s anonymity.” Daustyn the Composed said, “Let’s face it, he’s onto something.” With that Pál Able-Tongue could not necessarily disagree.
Much more was said about all these things later as more bottles of poison were relieved of their freight. Many things were agreed to that no one will ever recall. And firm plans were laid for the following day.
As they pondered the sun and its relative use and relative splendor, they felt themselves relatively at ease. All the while, the likes of Schubert and Debussy were emitted from one source of music while images of Beyonce, La Roux, Kanye and Lady Spears were transmitted, in silence, from another. No more will be said about that.
Emissions of light can do strange things in other lands, however. On this notion they all agreed.