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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

LAM 2010 - The Senario

The Althing in Iceland of 1000 AD was an important one. As always, many disputes were heard and settled, to the gain of some and loss of others. One of the significant decisions made at the Althing was to encourage all Icelanders to accept Christianity. This did not sit well with all. As always, many things were discussed, and deals made, away from the Speaker's Rock. Some came just to see and be seen. Traders and artisans came to display their wares, seeking customers and commissions at the gathering.
The days of the Landham were now long gone, so the good (even acceptable) farm land had pretty much all been settled. Knowing this, minor chieftains were becoming less and less likely to even oath to new bondi, and not very generous if they did. The famine years were now just a distant memory to only the oldest Icelanders, but still the land was not as bountiful as it once was. One exciting piece of news at the Althing was that of Eric the Red's new Green Land, and even mention of his son Lief's Vinland, both to the west.

There was a man named Ragnarr Thorbergsson, once from Kaupang in Norway. He had come to Iceland, hoping to improve his status and increase his trading. Now Ragnarr was well known for this weather luck, but not so envied for his luck in travel. His travels never were outright disasters, but certainly things just never turned out as he boasted they would.
Ragnarr's schemes at the Althing had not worked as he had planned. He was certainly not alone in this. There were recent immigrants to Iceland, and even young families and second sons, all of whom found that there was no chance of good farm land in their future. There were some who felt the conversion to the new religion was just not to their taste. As always, there were those who felt a fresh start in a new land would solve what ever problems that always seemed to plague them.

So Ragnarr, nothing if not shrewd, quickly hired a ship to sail to the new colony of Greenland. He gathered up a load of the hopeful and disgruntled who would pay him passage against the chance to settle on new farms of their own.
As it happened, things didn't go perfectly on the voyage, with the ship blown off course. Like Bjarni before them, they found themselves near Vinland. Knowing the tales freshly told, they made their way to Leif's buĂ°ir and found some Greenlanders already there. Most were not pleased to find that they would need to lay over the winter before continuing to Greenland in the spring.
This mixed group of farmers and craftsmen, of varied ages and original homelands, now finds themselves stuck together in close quarters in Vinland. They are settling in to this remote outpost best they can, and trying to help get ready for the winter soon to come. The ship and most of the crew has gone off down the coast to harvest valuable timber, hoping to improve their lot when they finally make it to Greenland.

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      Updated: 4 Dec, 2007
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