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TSAR's Viking Spirit

It might be some atavistic memory, but when a Viking longship hoves into view, some part of you wants to get a better grip on your spear, heft your shield and stand in a shield wall... Then some other part of your brain says "Cool!" and bids you lay out a decent welcome — after all, hordes of ravening Norse axe-men are sooooo 10th Century.

The Redpath Waterfront Festival called on T-SAR to lend a hand when the 35 metre-long 50 man Draken Harald H5rfagre came calling to Toronto in early July as a part of its long voyage from Norway to Lake Superior. The horde of Vikings aboard the living history project was quite modest (in numbers and manners), the horde of visitors eager to see the vessel was not. So we were pleased to turn to and assist with logistics, crowd-management, helping make vessels ready, and even supplying a massive store of supplies for their future journey! (There really is no limit to the talents of our crew...)

Naturally, we also kept a gimlet eye on safety, and took advantage of the opportunity to set up our tent and help educate the public on water-safety and safe-boating, and we even lent a couple of life-jackets for babies and small children. We also couldn't resist the opportunity to do some crowd management on the water; as T-SAR-2 was a part of the team at the July long weekend Tall Ships event ensuring safety for all during the parade of sail, while others turned-to and helped to crew the O-Canada, Canada's IMOCA Open 60 racing craft.

At length, the hardy Norsemen came ashore, and we went with them... Bards might sing epic sagas about the Staff Party Redpath laid on at the Harbourfront Radisson Admiral Hotel, where feasting and music went on long into the night, in the normal wont of all true sailors.

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