Disbatch from Iceland Day 4

Blue Lagoon and Reykjanes Peninsula Tour Meet the exotic moonlike landscape of the Reykjanes Peninsula on this popular tour. First visit Bessastadir, official estate of Iceland’s president. Then bathe in a natural and man-made wonder – a blue pool of mineral rich geothermally heated water in a lava field. Passengers leaving on afternoon flights will find this a convenient end-of-trip excursion. Others return to Reykjavik.

6:11 pm: I’m thoroughly convinced I want to come back to this wonderful country. I don’t know how much B would agree, but I LOVED the lava fields, the fish culture and all the fish to eat, the incessant sky,and I could get used to the nice and almost sarcastic self effacement of the Icelanders.

My biggest surprise was The Blue Lagoon, I wasn’t expecting it to be so wonderful. B said it was the first time forever he felt relaxed. It was the best experience for anyone not wanting to be seen in a bathing costume,thanks to all the steam rising up and bluish opaque water. The day was super sunny and we both are sporting sunburns. The actual place is out in a remote lava field. You can see the steam rising as you approach it from the distance.

Being a retard and a full fledge American prude, the locker room with its electronic lockers (that synched with a bracelet they give you to wear)was a little daunting, but I finally figured it out. My biggest surprise was I thought that after seeing its brochure, the Blue Lagoon would be a slick operation with a bunch of la-di-da people hanging around. Instead, it was the most relaxing, low key experience. And strangely one of those places that lives up to its insanely photogenic character, especially for a man made location. I was impressed how it beautifully belong to the area it is situated in.

They let us stay and soak there for a good hour and ¬Ĺ, which was long enough because I thought I was going to melt into the water after a half hour. It was really basically heaven.

We next spent a lot of time driving deeper though lava fields, spying more geographic marvels. We saw bubbling mud,steaming holes and more Teutonic fissures.

Stopping for lunch in a small fishing village named Grindevik, we ate at a small, local family owned restaurant. I had a simple fish sandwich which consisted of smoked salmon, asparagus, sour creme on bread.

The smell of fish in the air outside was omnipresent, much to the disliking of some of our fellow travelers. It made me nostalgic for the West Coast though.

After eating we went to the coast and saw lava spilling into the ocean.

The whole day seemed like an on site make-up seminar for a missed geology class (I mean this in a fantastic way though). The final leg of our excursion found us in a very tiny village where someone was keeping up a relatively extravagant aquarium,which included black crabs, turtles,large tanks of fish and assorted marine related information. A spot obviously popular with the Icelandic school children who had left behind drawings of the sea animals.

The most pleasant thing of all was the tour ended by dropping us off right at the airport. Our tour guide Kristina, who I made out to be about 70 (and alarming was smoking cigarettes on one of our photo stops!) was a dedicated birder, really knew the lay of the land and made those silly pun kind of jokes that made B crazy but that I love.

POSTSCRIPT:

3/14/01 I am harboring anti-American thoughts and take the day off work to decompress. I don’t feel so bad physically,not like I did on the way over. I will have to remember the first two days overseas will almost unbearable if I do not find a solution to these jet leg problems. I will admit red wine, not sleeping on the plane and taking naps in the middle of your first day are all no-nos, but basically I thought it was such a short flight I would not be affected by jet lag. Duh. I feel relatively functional today, poor B, he had to go to work. My final take on Iceland:it continues to haunt my thinking. I truly felt inclined for a return visit after I saw the landscape and sat in the Blue Lagoon. I wish I could go back and stay up north, I would love to see what that is like in the spring time.