it's in our DNA

You probably know that the Icelanders are the most literate people in the world. It's in my DNA: books, words, reading, thoughts, ideas.  Yesterday I enjoyed an afternoon of talking about Icelandic books and literature, beginning with the sagas. We were lucky that the earliest stories were written down in Norse, not Latin, so that the material was available to common people when they learned to read the language they spoke.  And Icelanders have remained purist in their attitudes to their spoken language today.  (It is one of the most difficult modern languages to learn, I'll tell you, because it still declines and conjugates and presents masculine, feminine and neuter nouns with attached articles, too, all of which have to match. I've been working at it for a few years and I'm not fluent. It would help if I did more homework, i.e. studied.)  So pure is the present-day language, in fact, that I am told a modern Icelander can pick up a saga in Old Norse and read it without a crib or dictionary.

Even though almost everyone in Iceland  speaks English (and several other European languages) they had an argument with Microsoft several years ago when Bill Gates wanted to stay with English in his programming because everyone in  Iceland would understand it.  But that would have meant that students and younger people coming on would not be as attached to their native language as they should be.  I don't know who was arguing, the government or sales force or social media, but Iceland won and got their computer programs in Icelandic.  BTW I have an Icelandic keyboard I can switch to for my Icelandic work.

I started this too late and he battermy power is about to give out. Mi