I’ve been wordy for a while. It’s time I took a back seat and shared with you some fabulous places.
“Mankind has inhabited the Arctic landscape for ten thousand years. Arctic nomads wandered with the ice, taking advantage of available resources from coastal areas and a mountainous countryside. Their concern for and close relationship to nature means that archaeologists are able to find few remnants of their culture.” – from the Salt website
“For thousands of years people have followed the movement of animals and the seasonal rhythms in the Arctic landscape. Footprints are few. SALT is inspired by and moves in that same Arctic landscape with care and respect.”
“In the heart of Puisaye, in Yonne, Burgundy, a team of fifty people have taken on an extraordinary feat: to build a castle using the same techniques and materials used in the Middle Ages.“
“The aim is to recreate … the construction processes that might have existed on an early 13th century building site. Unlike traditional archaeology, which is concerned with cataloguing, excavating and analysing an existing structure, experimental archaeology puts this process into reverse. A structure is built from start to finish in order to obtain, following experiments and observations, a set of conclusive results.
“Guédelon is a back-to-front archaeological dig.”
“Dive into the mysterious world of farmers, fishermen, and brass founders of the Stone Age 6000 years ago, and be a witness to the lifestyle of the Bronze Age 3000 years ago.”
“Lake dwellings, known as pole or pile dwellings, have been in existence at the shores of all large lakes in the Prealps, Switzerland, Italy, France, and Germany. Lake dwellings have also been discovered at some lakes in Italy, Austria, Latvia, Lithuania, Spain, at the Laibacher Moor, and the Federsee Moor in Upper Swabia. According to the latest data, this era constitutes the life form of the Neolithic and the Bronze Age between approximately 4300 BC and 800 BCE.”
Many years ago a friend and I visited a temporary museum in Switzerland where the curators had built stilt-houses out over the lake.
A family of boar were penned up in one building, little stripy piglets (boarlets? boarings?) suckling their massive bristly mother. Strange sheep, surprisingly clear-eyed and mischievous, with wide curving horns and tight fleece, almost daring us to race up the nearest Alp.
Archery, metalsmithing, skinning and tanning, weaving, presented in separate huts with guides to help you try for yourself.
The trip was memorable for many reasons, not least the bottle of Bronze Age style beer we bought with our last few Swiss Francs and drank as we dipped our naked, travel-weary feet into the clear lake waters.
That night we slept in the railway station in Bern, awaiting our morning departure for Calais and the ferry home, the last of our funds depleted but a wealth of memories in their stead.