Oldest kid woke up happy and not barfing. We had a successful breakfast with a family from Canada who thought our little troop of boys was amazing, the dad at the other table ended up bring Reed a pancake and some milk because Reed asked him for more food. They didn’t have to travel with us in the car though.
We got out on the road by 9ish again and our first stop was to pet some Icelandic horses that were close to the road. They tried to eat my hand but I wouldn’t let them. Also, Mommy and Daddy had a “discussion” about parking on the shoulder and the appropriate angle that a car could be parked without the car tipping over. Needless to say, the car did not tip over.
Second stop was for gas, which was super confusing (in Iceland they do weird things like a) not using English on the terminal, b) requiring that you specify how much money you want to spend up front rather than letting you choose to fill it up and c) don’t have manned pumps, which is nice if it’s the middle of the night but not so good when you just want to fill up during the easy and talk to someone about how things work) and eventually led to a call from my bank, who were wondering why I all of a sudden got multiple authorizations for money from a gas station in the middle of nowhere in Iceland (I’d say the fraud protection that kicked in there was spot on). Mommy also purchased donuts at the gas station, which looked amazing but apparently had cardamom, which made them taste a bit off.
Third stop was a set of waterfalls (Seljalandsfoss), one of which you could climb behind, which we proceeded to do and got not soaked but not exactly dry either, everyone had fun here:
Next, we stumbled on to the Eyjafjallajökull Visitor Centre (which Karen had seen a movie about on the plane on the way in), which was created by a farmer and his wife after their farm was almost ruined by the Eyjafjallajökull volcano in 2010. Said visitors center was really well done and we saw a great movie about the volcano and how it affected their farm and family.
Back in the car again (you’ll notice a trend)… we drove to a great waterfall called Skógafoss, which we all climbed up (kind of, Reed was on my back) and then lucked upon a geocache and took a bunch of pictures from up on top.
We had lunch at a picnic table near the parking lot and then drove about 30 seconds over to the Skógasafn (Skógar Museum), which is an Icelandic folk / history museum which had a bunch of really great stuff including a stuffed two headed lamb:
some great skeletons and a museum reception desk guy that was a bird watcher (with a bicep tattoo that he had to show us) who played guitar in a heavy metal band who just about did a backflip when we told him we lived in Portland. He had been there and played at the Roseland theater a couple years ago. He was super awesome and reminded us that there was an old plane that had crash landed many years ago (1973) that we could drive out to (details). Beck and I had seen pictures of this plane when doing research on Iceland (it makes for some iconic photographs) and so we found it on the GPS and drove the couple miles of gravel road / black sand out to find it and lucked up on a geocache at the same time. Everyone had a great time banging on the old plane.
If you ever find yourself randomly driving around the entire island of Iceland, you should definitely make it a point to drive out to this plane. 🙂
We were stretching it on the “kids in the car all day” front at this point and so the iPad came out and Karen and I got to tromp around Dyrhólaeyjarviti, which is a great point that looks out over black sand beaches:
and has some clever looking arches:
Finally, we drove to our “hotel”, which turned out to be a converted house that was run by a fantastic man named Robert, who was managing it for the winter for his friends. We didn’t know that he could have made us dinner and so got dinner at some horrible fast food joint before arriving (because who knows if the “hotel” was going to have food?) but he turned out to have studied with the top wild game chef in Iceland and after we put our dudes down for the night, got to watch him put together a splendid dinner for the one other couple that was staying at the house. We had a great night chatting with Robert and the other couple (also from Canada, apparently it was Canadian Thanksgiving weekend) and then we hit the sack.
- Geocaches: 2
- Waterfalls: 1
- Ice cream: negative
- “Discussions”: 1
- Bird watching, heavy metal guitarists who love Portland Oregon that man reception desks at small Icelandic folk museums : 1