How do you say “horse” in Icelandic?

Maybe someone can answer that question for me.

Paul Taggart/Herd in Iceland

When I was in Iceland last summer, I completely fell in love with their horses! They are so friendly and so beautiful. I used to go out and visit them in the bright 11 pm sunshine since there was nothing else to do at night in the tiny village where I stayed. They would always come up to greet me. Once time, I hopped the fence and was promptly surrounded by nine of them all nosing me, wanting some attention.

The Icelanders revere these animals. They are a pure breed…no other horses are allowed into Iceland and if an Icelandic horse travels to another country, it can’t come back. But then about halfway through my visit, I realized that the Icelanders eat horse meat. This made me sad and a little confused. How can they eat an animal they seem to hold in such high regard? I’m still perplexed by this.

Anyway, there’s a new documentary in the works about the horse herders in Iceland. It’s called “Herd in Iceland.” All summer, Icelanders let the horses graze in the hills, and then in the fall (September, I think), they round them up. And I wonder if they round them up to slaughter them? I wonder how this beautiful documentary will approach this little detail? Seems like a grisly ending for such a seemingly picturesque film…


~ by Valerie Palmer on July 11, 2012.

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