Sunday, May 18, 2008


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Today is St. Erik's Day in Sweden. Erik, more specifically Erik IX, was a 12th century king of Sweden who was (probably) murdered at Uppsala, (possibly) at or near the location of the present Cathedral. His head was (putatively) cut off, and a spring (purportedly) popped up where it came to rest. Oh, and he led a crusade against the Finns. That's pretty much all that anyone knows (or at least, chooses to believe) about Erik, but nonetheless he's quite a popular Saint in these parts—despite the fact that he was never actually canonized.

Well, "real" saint or no, it's his day today, and on St. Erik's Day it's traditional to walk Eriksleden, a medieval pilgrim's path that goes from the church at Gamla Uppsala, where Erik was buried, to the cathedral in Uppsala, whence his relics were later translated. Today's weather being not only cold and windy but also quite wet, I think we can leave Erik's spirit to wander on it's own, but I did walk Eriksleden a couple of weeks ago back when it was being unseasonably warm and pleasant. At first the well marked path hugs the river bank, but then it takes off inland, going past the Tuna Allotments (more later, I promise) and through some apartment complexes before cutting over the E4, through several fields to finish at Gamla Uppsala.

Anyway, if you're curious, you can check out the gallery for an overview of the walk.

Oh, and happy belated Norwegian National Day!

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