Yes, we’ve been on vacation! Before we made it to Iceland a week ago, we had an all-day layover in London (hard to get to Iceland from Ireland), so off we went from Gatwick to explore the city a bit: lunch at Wagamama because it sounded good, then wandering through Covent Garden to a visit at the London Transport Museum. It was interesting but I wouldn’t call it top of the heap for museums. I’ve been to the bigger attractions so we decided to try something new.
We found visiting the outdoor-gear shops (big North Face-type stores) in one particular block a good way to pass time, and we managed not to spend money. We did see a manufactured ice-climbing wall, but I had no idea we’d be doing it for real in a few days!
1. For Mom, sewing machine display at the airport
2. Gate 13. This was after David realized he flew on Friday the 13th and we had been talking about the 13 y.o. boy who was struck by lightning at 13:13 on that Friday the 13th.
3-4. Our very clean, simple, Scandinavian-looking hotel the first night. All the beds are twins to be pushed together if you book a double, apparently, and this was the case in 4/5 places that week.
5. Outside the Keflavik hotel, Paddy’s Irish Pub was the nearest business.
6. Bónus is a grocery chain. I think the piggy’s left eye needs some design work. Thank goodness we got a few groceries because we couldn’t afford to eat out in the expensive restaurants (if you could find one).
7. Gullfoss (Golden Falls). Look closely for the rainbow
8-11. Geysers, including the one named Geysir which became the name of all others in the world. That’s the one I found hot! Strokkur erupted several times while we were there but the bigger Geysir is less frequent.
12. Our silly little rental car (big enough to pick up hitchhikers from Sweden and Czech Republic, though!) was not suited for the kinds of roads the many safari-like vehicles can take. If you note the rear lights, you’ll see the reverse light is only on the right, while the left has a rear fog light in red!
13. For Mom: wristies for sale! I prefer the non-thumb type.
14. More on the types of roads. The ones with an F before the number require 4wd… they get worse from there. We did not go in the highlands at all as a result.
15-19. Þingvellir National Park, where government was established in 930 AD and cracks in the earth show continental drift. #17 shows a pool where unfaithful women were drowned. Apparently men’s crimes were punished by stake burning.
20. I like the funny hat on the 5000 krónur lady. The coins all have fish on them.
21. An expensive meal in an expensive hotel, but at least this one lived up to the reputation, price, and presentation.
22. Our ranch-like hotel. Iceland gets the occasional polar bear who floats or swims in from Greenland.