After a “slammin'” 2.5-hour nap (shout out to Scott back in Washington, who has forced this phrase into my everyday vocabulary), Shawn and I are up and nursing the bags under our eyes with big, deep cups of coffee. Now we’re showered, quickly re-caffinating ourselves and contemplating our afternoon activities.
I ventured outside to take a couple of photos, cursing myself for not bringing my 4-inch-thick camera bible for a quick lesson on landscape photography. When I’ve forced myself to sit down and experiment with different manual settings for my Canon EOS 30D, I’ve discovered I can take pretty good photos. Today, on the other hand, I wasn’t so lucky, but I offer my bounty for your consideration anyway.
We’re staying on the north shore of Hvalfjörður, the “Whale’s Fjord,” and the scenery is breathtaking (click the thumbnail to the left to see the view directly outside our window, looking out across Hvalfjörður). Mountains on all sides, but it’s as if we’re at some incredible altitude because the tops of these huge mountains are right here with us. Within a distance that Icelanders refer to as “close by,” which means anything within a 2-hour car drive, is the waterfall Glymur, the nation’s highest. We plan on hiking up there tomorrow.
We’ve already discovered some of the more unique aspects of Iceland, including the fact that, while the potable water is some of the cleanest in the world, it has a, hmmm, how to say, “unusual” smell? This island has volcanic origins, so there’s a good amount of sulfur in water. Still not getting my point? If, like me, you grew up with a large dog, imagine the end result if you gave that animal six or seven boiled eggs for dinner. Truth be told, it’s not that bad, and the smell goes away as soon as you turn the water off (it doesn’t linger on your skin, either).
Lounging on a overstuffed leather couch across the room from me, Shawn just mentioned that the coffee, which is made with the same water, is great. I agree. And the people who made it are pretty friendly, too.