Friday, 4 June 2010

An author is looking for answers

over on the Fidra Bookshop blog. Do go and take a look. I have answered all but the last one.

The first, can a centaur fit in a tent, is obvious. Yes, if the tent is big enough. It depends on the size of the centaur and the size of the tent. I do not know much about centaurs but I have always assumed them to be about the size of a horse. Perhaps I had better go back and check in Diana Wynne Jones "Tough Guide to Fantasyland."

Then there is the question about what fairies pack for a camping holiday. That answer is obvious too - fairy cakes and fairy dust. The first to sustain them and the latter is magical stuff that should provide anything else they need....but I wonder if it includes the tent for the centaur?

Now, the next question was a little more difficult, what do selkies eat at feasts? Well yes I do know what a selkie is...my paternal grandfather made sure I knew that at a very early age - after all some selkies did migrate Downunder. Vanessa mentions fishcakes and I am equally certain that seaweed would appear on the menu. There would be seaweed soup, seaweed parcels and seaweed bread. All of this would help them to keep slim and healthy. There will be no sushi however. I am convinced selkies are, like me, allergic to vinegar.
Harvesting seaweed would not be a problem. Selkies cannot breathe under water - but they can hold their breath for an extraordinary length of time.

That left all but the last question answered. That concerned the names for two ocean powers whose battles cause the storms to rise at sea. I am still puzzled by this. The answer has to be in Gaelic and Norse mythology...something I know less about than I should. There are storm kelpies and seonaidh but they are not, as far as I know, storm raising powers. I still do not know whether there are two ocean powers in Gaelic and Norse mythology but there are names that might suit, Murcadh (sea warrior) and Moray (also a sea warrior). There is also Kedehern (battle lord) but he may be more of a land man, there is Badb (god of fury) and there is the real life Somerled...
I do not know the answers but the names fascinate me....I might just go back to Fidra and add the first two. Does anyone have more suggestions?

5 comments:

Melinda Szymanik said...

What fun things to be thinking about - perfect for a friday. Now I'm going to have to go check out my classical mythology book for the Ocean powers

Sheep Rustler said...

Do centaurs want to fit into tents? I always imagine them the size of cart horses.

Fairies - depends on how wussy they are. The fairies in Artemis Fowle tended to pack weapons and grappling hooks.

Selkies - herring?

catdownunder said...

Let me know if you find any Melinda!
Perhaps centaurs want a nice dry spot from Scottish weather and since the bookshop does not allow them in there...
Yes, I had forgotten the battle like tendencies of the Artemis Fowl fairies. All the same I have always considered fairy dust extremely dangerous stuff, especially in the hands of the wrong sort of fairy!
Ah, sea weed platter, seaweed soup, herring with fish cakes...now dessert? Something exotic like seaweed and periwinkle bread on the side?

Frances said...

There is a curious divide in fairies, between those of William Allingham, and those of such as Pixie O'Harris, or of "The Flower Fairies".
I would think that folk lore comes down on the side of the dangerous.

catdownunder said...

And dangerous is definitely more interesting!