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Waterfall dancer

Taken at Kjosfossen Waterfall on the train journey from Myrdal to Flåm, Norway.


We stopped for five minutes to admire and take photos of this beautiful waterfall when, suddenly, Norwegian folk music started, playing from somewhere, and this young woman just appeared and danced for us.


It was all a bit surreal !


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Thanks to Harald S., I now know the name of that lady: Huldra.


In Scandinavian folklore, the huldra (Norwegian, derived from a root meaning "covered" or "secret") is a seductive forest creature. Other names include the Swedish skogsrå or skogsfru (meaning "lady (ruler) of the forest") and Tallemaja (pine tree Mary). A male hulder is called a huldu, or in Norway a huldrekall. Her name suggests that she is originally the same being as the völva Huld and the German Holda.


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The beautiful Kjosfoss waterfall is one of the many stops on the Flåm Railway, which has been a major tourist attraction since 1940. The distance from the Flåm station, where the cruise liners dock up to the Myrdal station, is about 20 km (about 12 miles). The train winds its way along the narrow valley, climbing 864.8 metres (about 2800 feet) through 21 tunnels.


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Taken on August 22, 2008