On the road between Dyrhólaey and the main road that lead to more vast expanses of rocks, grass, waterfalls, and other natural things, we stopped on this road.
And got out of the car.
To the other side of the car was this. MOUNTAINS! And damp soil goo.
I took this opportunity to say YES EZRA!
Further down the road was a field of stubby stratified rock formations surrounded by damp soil. Perhaps it was once all rock that, over a gazillion years, eroded to the funky masses they are today. Or not.
Eating had yet to occur. Doh.
...Until we got to Vik and stopped into a supermarket for some meat, crisp bread, and cheese. Does a body good! Not really.
Greg made a triple decker meat-cheese-crisp bread sandwich of some sort with surprisingly tasty sesame-speckled Burger crisp bread. Light, crispy, and flavorful, it actually gave me crisp bread cravings when I got back home. Alas, I haven't found the same brand here and when I tried a different one, it wasn't nearly as delicious (mostly, it was bland-ariffic). I am a sad panda.
Maybe someone can explain this to me. Here's a pack of bologna from the front...
...And there's the back. Rather atful for a package of processed meat. I can recognize Da Vinci, but the other images escape me. Halp?
We also hard boiled some eggs that morning to bring with us on the trip. These eggs were a rather deep orange-yellow color, rich, and tasty. (Hard boiled is my favorite form of egg.)
And the desolate road continued as we went to our next waterfall.
Unlike the other waterfalls we had visited that day, Svartifoss in Skaftafell National Park is not located right off the road, but it's a fairly short (less than 20 minutes), unthreatening walk to get there. (I figure this is worth noting if you're as terribly out of shape as I am. Whenever I have to deal with steep paths my body goes into, "Fuck fuck fuck I feel like crap" mode, but it's unlikely I'll actually say anything while huffing and puffing because...I am too busy huffing and puffing.) You can see the path on the side of the stream in the photo.
The name Svartifoss, or Black Fall, comes from the dark basalt columns that formed from cooling lava. I just searched for more information concerning how columnar basalt develops, but if I try to fully understand the science now I will never finish this post. (You'd wonder why it takes so long to write a post. I'd attribute most hold-ups to getting distracted by the Internet, but sometimes it's because I'm trying to quickly research something I don't know much about. Which is most things.)
I'm mildly fascinated by naturally emerging patterns in unexpected places. If I had to choose between going to a beautiful beach or looking at rock columns, I'd rather do the latter. NATURE IS AWESOME. Don't you forget it.
- It flows.
Greg shot this video of the fall in action.
The final destination was close. So very close. Just over that hill, actually.
When we finally reached Jökulsárlón, the largest glacier lake in Iceland, the sky was unfortunately blanketed by clouds. Although the sun was still shining brightly at 6:30 p.m., its light barely reached the glaciers. OH GOD, FAIL.
But it was still good. Peaceful and quiet, aside from the soft creaking and trickling sounds of the moving/melting glaciers. Very few other tourists to be seen. Cool, crisp air. Totally surreal. It didn't really hit me at the time that I would probably never get to visit a place like this ever again; I was mostly thinking about how I wanted to sit amongst the grass and rocks for ages while staring at the ice and passing seals. I also wanted to climb on a glacier, but that would have required a boat and I'd assume that "glacier climbing" is prohibited.
- I touched...ice.
I did touch a chunk of wayward ice that came to the shore, possible another prohibited act, but I was just trying to send it back to its friends. YEAAAAH! If you think my writing is less-than-stellar, you should hear me talk. It's much more painful. Watch this video shot by Diana at your own risk...of thinking less of me.
I really wanted the clouds to follow my commands (that is, "MOVE"), but no dice.
I would have also liked to get a closer look at the seals, but they weren't interested in getting a closer look at us. I don't blame em; we're pretty boring.
Some of the glaciers had black marks, or zebra stripes as Diana called them.
You can see more of the stripey action in this photo by Diana.
And there's Diana!...dead. I mean asleep. I mean pretending to be one or the other.
For some reason one of my goals for the trip was to have a "sleepy/dead" photo somewhere in Iceland. AND I GOT IT, in this grassy pit by the lake. (Here's a better version sans car.)
And for the main photo in my album of "Greg Doing Weird Shit," here's Greg pretending to snort out a nose-ful of algae snot. He was pretty excited when he picked up the algae at the edge of the lake and realized it had a strong resemblance to "diseased bodily discharge."
Yeeeup...that's our Greg.
For a better view of the lake from afar, check out this photo by Diana.
We had to leave at a reasonable time to account for the 4+ hour drive back to Reyjavik. Sigh. Bye-bye, glaciers.
Bye-bye, 8:40 p.m. setting sun.
Helloooo, gas station!
We passed a large chunk of time by playing a game called, "What Popular Movies Has Robyn Not Seen?" Because over the course of the trip it was determined that my movie history was severly deficient, mostly in the "Action" and "Drama" categories. Every time Greg or Diana guessed a popular movie that I hadn't seen and they had, they would get a point—the scores went up to the 30s before they called it quits. What haven't I seen: any Die Hard movie, any James Bond movie, any Robocop movie, any Terminator movie (that I can recall well), aaaand then some.
When we got home sometime after midnight, Greg's gurgling belly asked for a snack. I wasn't going to refuse a late night hot dog, although wrapping microwaved dogs in cheese and sticking them in lightly toasted buns may not have been the best recipe for "delicious late night snack." They were missing a few magical ingredients, like sauce and fried onions. Ooops. Well. We did what we could with our limited ingredients.
And that was the end of THE MOST AWESOME DAY I SPENT AROUND NATURE. It wasn't until it was over—more specifically, when I was lying in bed with nothing to concentrate on—that I realized, "Damn that was awesome. That's not going to happen again, ever, is it." But it's probably for the best that it's such a singular experience; if it happened all the time, it wouldn't be as special.