Als is an island in Hrolf Kraki's Saga but seems to be a town in The Merman's Children:
"...the two crossed streets of Als lay thick with shadow..." (p. 19)
Eyjan the mermaid loves the sea and translates a poem composed by her brother, Tauno. To summarize, the sea:
is clad in sun, moon, rain and wind;
strews gulls and spindrift;
below, is green, gold, calm and caressing;
has shoals, herds, pods and flocks of children;
is the giver and shelterer of the world;
deeper, keeps darkness, mystery and terror;
is Maiden, Mother and Mistress of Mysteries;
enfolds weary bones.
Eyjan thinks that a land dweller might get the same sense by thinking of earth, the year and Mary in her sky-colored cloak. Maiden, Mother and Mistress comprise a Triple Goddess.
Neil Gaiman's cabin body loves the sea and dislikes steam ships:
"What's the point of being a sailor, if you're living high above the ocean, instead of cool and comfortable below decks, cooled by the water, listening to the sea go by.
"You're a romantic.
"Why be a sailor, if you're not?"
-Neil Gaiman, The Sandman: Worlds' End (New York, 1994), p. 73.