Notes : Daniel Ridings


December 13, 2009

Gåsevadholm and Li, round trip

I had a pair of wheels built for my old bike. After 130km I turned them in for fine-tuning and want to get some more distance out of them before the spring. They might need another tune-up before I do anything serious.

It was cold today, but not quite freezing. Well, acutally, it was freezing in the shadows (and there’s not much sun):

Frost in the shadows

But when you’re pedaling, you keep warm (except for that blasted metal-plate that the cleats in the shoes are fasten to. They turn to a plate of ice, right under the ball of your foot and your toes).

First stop was Gåsevadholm.

Gåsevadholm
Gåsevadholm
Gåsevadholm

The King of Sweden’s brother-in-law owns it. The farm itself is documented back to the 1300’s but the Dutch destroyed the original buildings in 1531. This particular building was build in the mid 1700’s and was pimped up in the 1800’s. What we see now was a fidei commissum. That is a way to get around inheritance laws. The idea was to keep the property in one piece, instead of splitting it up from generation to generation. The person could access, use and profit from the property, but he (it was always a he) didn’t own it. It got passed on in its entirety to the next generation. That legal form was terminated in modern times, and it is now a “company” with one person owning all the shares.

The “vad” in Gåsevadholm is the same root as “wade” in English. This was a place where one could cross the water. The water was used for milling as well and you can find old milling stones strewn around (they’re not the kind of thing you move very far away once they’ve been worn out):

mill-stone

On to Li, the site of iron-age graves:

On the way to Li

Li is at the foot of a moraine, mounds of boulders and rocks that the glaciers shoved in front of them and dumped at the end of the ice-age.

There are (have been) 125 standing stones, one of them huge, a bit over 5 meters, but I don’t have a picture of it. It’s just a rock.

Li
Li

From here you can see the sea and in the viking age, there were canals that they used to drag their boats up this far. You can see the sea far in the background.

View of the sea, from Li

The site was used for burials for centuries. When it rains heavily, the farmers notice thin eggshell like fragments that wash down into their fields. It’s bones.

I come to this place often, strangely enough, usually in the winter. I guess it is because you get it all for yourself. This is an older photograph from a couple of years back, also in the winter.

Li in the winter

It not only looks cold, it was cold.

Today’s distance: 43km averaging 21km an hour.

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