When the digging of a country water well ran into complications, one culprit was deemed responsible: invisible, magical “huldufólk”.
RÚV reports that there had been numerous failed attempts to drill a cold water well in Hegranes, in north Iceland, prompting suspicions amongst some people in the area. These include farmer Birgir Þórðarson, who speculated that this may be the work of huldufólk; meaning “hidden people”, magical beings of legend that supposedly often struggle against humans when they disturb the natural order.
Birgir pointed out that the drilling for the well was possibly too close to a nearby churchyard, which may have angered the huldufólk. Having only begun drilling a week ago, workers have encountered one problem after the next. As such, he speculated that it may be possible to reason with the huldufólk and make amends somehow.
Feykir now reports that drilling has resumed, and water was found. When asked by reporters if he had anything to do with this, Birgir said that he had negotiated with the huldufólk, who ultimately gave their blessing.
Hegranes is an area known for a high level of reputed huldufólk activity. In 1978, the Icelandic Road Administration was forced to stop blasting a hill for road construction when negotiations with huldafólk broke down.