Anakana Schofield – Author of Bina, Martin John and Malarky

Up the Islensku cardigan

Magnificent Icelandic cardigan patterns here. 

You might need to spake Icelandic knitting terms to fathom them.



I was just at a screening. There was one image that struck me. It was a shot of a park, filmed in Autumn, I think it looked like Robson Park on the Eastside. Is it high definition that makes the leaves that wholesome orange, and the ground that damp. It was remarkable to be able to experience the weather in this way and gave me gusto for the possibilities of more accurate weather depiction.

I should add that this shot was nothing to do with the weather nor the park really and was a spoof on Dr Spook/Star Trek. However I read that particular frame in this way. That one frame then coloured the entire piece.

I am dismayed by the inaccurate tinkering with the weather that takes place in our fiction (read: weather abuse) I don’t understand why the weather must be invoked as a vehicle for all kinds of things other than that of what it is and that if you actually pay attention to what it is, it becomes mighty compelling in its minutae.  Where there appears to be no variety if you examine it, you find infinite variety.

All credit for this goes to that Icelandic postwoman who I walked beside way back in 94 in the streets of Reykjavik for research on another matter. She spoke to me about this and awoke me to the weather. Call it my Michael Fish hurricane moment. Takk, takk (except it’s spelt with that funny P shaped letter)

A dip in the temperature has sharpened the old mental faculty. The various weather events, as previously detailed in this unrolling blatheration, thrill me in their individual ways. I think my weather intrigue springs from being part of the Sealink Ferry generation. The wind in Mayo has it’s own patois. But the most informative snippet I ever heard about the weather came not from a scientist or a web based reading but from an Icelandic postwoman who I followed on her route in Reykjavik I think it was in 94 as research for a story I was trying to cultivate.

I recall her explaining to me that everybody thinks the weather is all kinds of things and usually terrible, but if you are out in it, she explained it’s really not bad at all. I think she was galloping along with a big bag at the time, me at her heels, eyes a-opened, listening intently for something, and probably not expecting to hear that. In my imagination I had concocted the world of Icelandic post women as something far beyond what the reality entailed.

Back in the sorting office, we gathered with the other women for their coffee break around flasks and during the chatter (quite a bit of why on earth are you interested in the post office) the conversation turned to music. We talked briefly of music incl Bjork (she’s very special) and I think we talked about low pay and much more. It was the weather reflection that stayed with me for I found that once I was indeed out in the weather and actually in it, paying attention to it, it was precisely as she’d described.

When I am looking at the weather I can find it vexing, but by getting underneath it, I have a whole other relationship with it. And that relationship includes moments of oppression, of marvel, wonder, despair and what if? I established this relationship in a country where it can be every season within fifteen minutes.