I thought I’d post something entirely different tonight. Something which I came about by accident, but is, at least for me, fascinating.
I was doing a little research whilst on the phone to my mum tonight about how you pronounce the Danish capital city’s name. (It turns out to be Kopen-Hay-Gen... and not Kopen-Ha-Gen, as both my mum and I had thought, but that is beside the point of this post.) A little more research about Denmark brought me to Kalaallit Nunaat, or Greenland, and its recent semi-independence from Denmark.
Internationally, on June 21, 2009, Greenland assumed self-determination with responsibility for self-government of judicial affairs, policing, and natural resources. Also, Greenlanders were recognized as a separate people under unofficial international law. Denmark maintains control of finances, foreign affairs, and defence. It is a step towards full independence from rule from Denmark. The sole official language of Greenland became Greenlandic. I thought that it would be nice if this was happening to Scotland. (Well obviously without Greenlandic becoming our national language.)
The long history of the island can be read in various places on the net, but there is a relatively good article on Wikipedia, but a couple of things were of immense interest to me. Firstly, that the United States of America wanted to buy Greenland from Denmark in 1947. It seems that the States were interested in the position of the country during the cold war. The sum offered was $100,000,000, a fair old amount of money in these days.
The second thing was the photographs I was seeing on the Wiki site and associated pages. I have included a few of them here for your delectation. Of course I had seen pictures of Greenland before, and I was aware of the fact that the Greenlanders did not live in igloos, but my memory is of scattered communities with brightly coloured houses built on rocky slopes. However, the centre of the capital city (the most northern in the world) Nuuk (previously Gothab) was a bit of a surprise to me.
It looks like a lovely place. Seems to me that it would be fun to go there on holiday sometime.