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Saturday, August 21, 2010

Hi there,

It's Grondzilla here, volunteering my services as the blogger for the day based on a certain level of foolishness on my part. As the semi-official photographer for DARC on this expedition I've been getting to see a lot of the interpreters over the last week. They've been going gangbusters and unfailingly drawing visitors to the L'anse aux Meadows back into history with them as they practice their arts, skills and trades and demonstrate first hand life here in the hinterlands a thousand years ago. It's been my great pleasure and privilege to try to capture a small sense of how much fun it is to be at the epicenter of this one ancient piece of Canadian 'European' history.

Don't worry...we're not done yet and I'll try my best to find more interesting peeks into the lives of these industrious visitors.

Alrighty then, enough of the small talk...let's get to the good stuff.

Today, for those of you following along on the Calendar, was 'smelt day' and boy howdy what a day. The amount of planning and agonizing and then just plain work that goes into making the smelt happen does boggle the mind a little bit. It's interesting to see the human machinery in action as the smelt workers go at their tasks with an enthusiasm and determination that only somewhat obsessive crazies can muster.

What's that? Oh right...I promised 'good stuff'...let's hope these images are a reasonable consolation prize.

First up we have the noble Grimbold manfully providing one whole 'Norsepower' to the bellows to keep the home fires burning. What do you mean that was truly awful? You wound me.

The machinery that makes this whole thing work is really about how these two elements interact (as far as my limited monkey-brain could make out...I'm sure there's all kinds of chemistry and physics going down but without the bellows and furnace you've got bupkis).

When I got back to our base station to have a look through the small mountain of photos that I shot this afternoon I took at little double-take at this one. What exactly were they making in there? The One Ring? Yikes!

Eventually it got to be time to drag the bloom into the light. I regret to inform friends and family that the mother furnace didn't survive the procedure. This shot is a good indicator of how roasty toasty things were inside.

Eventually the molten child was brought sizzling into the outside world and while it may be stretching the metaphor a tiny bit this here action was the doctors slap on the bottom. Ouch.

Stay tuned friends of should be back to a sober and focused posting very very shortly (at least pretty much as soon as they see what happens when unsupervised 'support staff' get ahold of the keys).


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