Once upon a time, a bunch of folks went through a few old files, a couple of scrapbooks, and a handful of tidbits from other people’s journals and realized they had opened Pandora’s Box. They’d discovered the discovery of America was not quite as crisp and clean as their elementary schoolbooks had declared. They’d discovered …
I love that phrase simply because it brings goose bumps to my arms when you say it in the voice of a guy who’s narrating a History Channel documentary: “Who really discovered America?”
Whether it was the Chinese, the Welsh, the Polynesians or the Africans, one thing remains true: not everyone wanted to stick around.
Leif Eriksson was one of those fellows. With a massively busy schedule of plundering and pillaging, I’m gathering Mr. Eriksson felt the pressure from both his dad and grandpappy to keep active, keep moving, and watch out for folks with rulebooks and badges who said you weren’t allowed to kill folks whenever you got the itch to test out your newly sharpened ax.
Leif was granted the honorable title of first European to set foot on North American soil. Because of this, and the fact that a few Norsemen pitched a tent and set up shop in the Orkneys way back when, Highland Park has granted global travelers the opportunity to taste a whisky made in tribute of all the pluck it takes to be the first. Or even the second. Maybe the third or fourth.
But it still takes spunk.
And a boat.
Yet you don’t necessarily need a boat to have a wee dram. You simply need a passport to grant you access to the duty free shops of either air or sea ports. Because that’s where you’ll find the Leif Eriksson Release by Highland Park.
I’m not the first to discover this delightful spirit, but just like Leif Eriksson, I’ve planted a flag on it and called it mine.