UPPSALA 

We arrived when it seemed like every student in the town was out of college and heading for the train or cycling home. It looked like an interesting place but it was dinner time and we drove through to find the right place. We found it just 8kl outside town. It was a little village called Ulva. We settled beside a weir so that we would be sung to sleep by the music.

Next day we attacked the city, I don't use that word lightly. I was driving trying to find a place to safely park the Tigin and Molly, when I found myself driving up a two way bicycle street much to the surprise of the many cyclists who were scattering for cover in all directions including the river (according to Jimmy who didn't even work up a sweat). Me on the other hand was red faced and trying to do a "U" turn in the middle of it all. Only an Irish woman I could see written in the whites of their eyes.

The city is divided in two by the river, with the academic on one side and the merchandise on the other. There is a beautiful energy in this city, so many young people of all nationalities, creating a charm that is infectious. We visited the Cathedral where the relics of St.Eric, the remains of King Gustav, and Linnues(the botanist whom Jimmy was familiar with, old buddies!)among others are entombed.

ABOVE..There are many fine examples of runestones around Uppsala they date from around the eleventh century.This one is in the grounds of the university the atrwork is amazing and done by skilled artistsof their day

We met up later in Williams bar and sure enough it was like O'Connors on a thursday night. The faces were different and the names surely were, but the music was mighty, and the craic was too.Later we met her and two of her Swedish friends (Angelika and Freda) for lunch and within an hour it felt like we had known her for ever. With such short notice Margaret managed to enlist Bengt on the box, Bert on mandolin, harmonica, guitar, and vocals, Anders on guitar and vocals, Angelika on the fiddle, Andreas on flute (who travelled up from Stockholm at a moments notice) and Margaret herself from Rathfarnham Dublin, on guitar, flute, and vocals.

It was a great night. Margaret is a wonderful girl and it easy to see why so many musicans turned up at the drop of a hat, what an ambassador for Ireland.

 


 

IT's on occasions like this one recognises the power of music,to meet people and share in the positive energy's involved

We look forward to hooking up with these folks again.... we are now known in Uppsala as theIrish hippies...cool

Later in the day we checked out the Irish pub looking for a bit of action. It is nearly two weeks since the Irish went home and Jimmy is icthing for a good session. Well he wasn't going to get it here as they have live bands alright but no Irish (is that Irish or what!!!). So he sent an email to a contact called Margaret whom he had been in touch with about two weeks earlier on the Internet. Within half an hour she was on the phone arranging a session

Merry meet Merry part and Merry meet again..

 

Next morning we visited Gamla Uppsala (old Uppsala) It is similar to Tara with buriel mounds dating from the twelfth centuryThis is a pic of the east middle and west mounds at gamla Uppsala.A great place to walk and absorb some of the wonderful prana here The sacred grove is just visable to the right it dates from about eleventh century.It was excavated in 1846 and the remains of a young woman were found complete with many articles of pottery etc.

Forget your cow's crossing sign in england take a look at this..imagine training an irish cat to do this...

We spent a night in this nature reserve and woke to the dawn chorus, went walking in the forest and found huge anthills about 6 foot across and 4 foot high...we kept moving!! We also saw our first wildflower a small blue gentian.on a closer look at the ground it was the first ok but many more were close to turning the forest floor into a beautiful blue carpet .

Mistletoe growing very happily in a nature reser

ANUNDSHOG

we spent two days here its the site of the largest tumulus in Sweden It contains some stone burial ships and a huge rune stone.The area is in a birch forest. It is a beautiful sunny warm day one to spend some time alone with the trees ...and sun..

 

AS we walked around the forest we noticed this guy keeping an eye on us..

CAN YOU SEE HIM

 

THIS RUNESTONE IS ABOUT 3 METERS HIGH AND IS SAID TO DEPICT A MAN AND WOMAN ENTWINED IT DATES TO ELEVENTH CENTURY ALSO

Stone burial boats to carry the dead to the next life.Provisions were also included

 

 

 

 

 

 

The labrinth this is the only remaining one in this part of Sweden its in a village called tibble..It consists of about 3000 stones placed precisely .It's purpose is not sure but it is thought to be a courting game..the woman stood in the center and the man had to find his way to her .. yes it'samazing ..

OK so its time to move on again so we are heading West to GothenburgWest to Gothenburg

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