Day 3: Golden Circle (continued)

The long days and sleepless nights and trading being ice cold and then swelteringly hot inside (all those layers to keep putting on and off) conspire to make me sleep literally every time the bus moves more than 10 minutes. I want to stay up and see things, I just literally can’t.

We get to the Golden Waterfall. We need to put ice grips on our shoes now; it’s still colder here than anywhere we’ve been and the ground is sheets of black ice. Read more of this post

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Day 3: Golden Circle

The temperatures keep dropping (and will as we travel farther away from Reykjavik throughout the day), but it’s our last full day on the tour and there is a lot to see… Read more of this post

Day 2.5: The Wind Howls

After we all come in from dinner, we stop and chat at the hotel bar. It’s after midnight when I head to bed.

Though I’m in a constant state of exhaustion, though I struggle to stay awake to see this country and hear what our guide is telling us about it every time I’m put on the bus… now that I should, I don’t sleep. Read more of this post

Day 2: Reykjavik, Vikings and Wine

After we return from the Blue Lagoon, we all return to our respective rooms to pull ourselves together and prepare to go out.

A few hours later, we step out for a circuitous walk into Reykjavik for shopping and then a cab ride to the Viking House restaurant and hotel across town. Read more of this post

Day 2: Blue Lagoon

I’m up early to have breakfast- the buffet at the Radisson Blu Saga is quite extensive but, like a lot of places here, on the pricy side (by trip’s end we’ll realize it was among the cheapest options and easily the best value for food we’d seen) but it’s included for us as guests. I’m not generally a breakfast person but plenty of options are provided and I find something to satisfy. Read more of this post

Day 1.5: Northern Lights hunt

We take a tour of Reykjavik but the overnight has taken its toll; I keep nodding off between stops to get out and see things.

4pm: sunset

Just as well; tonight will be a late one as the hunt for northern lights can run until midnight or 1am.

There are no guarantees. If we don’t see them tonight we’ll look again tomorrow, and if not we’ll try one last time the final night. Yesterday they were great, but past performance is no guarantee of future returns.

Still, the conditions are really good: 5/9 on the probably scale and clear skies over the area. We’ll head out past KEF airport into the dark and take our chances.

We pull out in time, scanning the skies even in the city lights. Our bus waits for another. We pull into a city lot for them…

I don’t know how long we wait; I fall asleep. It’s still Day 1, an interminably long day but hopefully worth it. I wake when we move again, the other bus still not anywhere to be seen.

There was just a super moon, and the sky is bright even outside the city. That will diminish how clearly we can see them, though our cameras might get them anyway.

No guarantees that we’ll see anything. Even if we do they could last seconds minutes or hours.

Our bus unloads us and turns off the lights. We are waiting in the dark and cold – oh so cold, even bundled. I’ve got a small tripod for my iPhone and the northern lights photo app loaded. It’s cold in my hands, even thru gloves. We don’t know which way to look, other than up. The second bus pulls in, lights on, unloading.

I start to think, if it could only last seconds, I don’t want to miss it because this bus still had its lights on… and then I have the most wonderful sense of assurance.

We are not going to miss it. God is going to show us this amazing part of His design and He knows that people are still arriving. His timing will be perfect as always.

The bus lights finally go out. We’re all spread out. The guides know what they’re looking for but most of us don’t other than it won’t be as colorful to the eye as it is in pictures. Opposite the moon it seems the sky is doing something, maybe, but maybe it’s my imagination. I take a picture just because I am not sure. I won’t see what I got until later.

Definitely a hint of green there

To our eye against the moonlight and dark sky it looks gray more then green but pretty soon there is a line of it clear across the sky

It could fade away but no, it spreads and more lines join and it dances in the sky and I laugh and laugh because God is sweeter and more gracious to me than I can describe, nor certainly ever deserve. To see it- well even if none of the pics come out I am so grateful!

The pics came out, it seems.

We are out there for hours and when we return they are still appearing in the sky even as close as our hotel.

But it’s cold and we’ve all had long, long days.

Bed will be another blessing.

Day 1: Departure Iceland

The flight is at 7:35. International: advice is to get there three hours ahead. 4:35pm. But my car has picked its moment to beg me to get rid of it and so between the unfamiliar rental car and the unfamiliar route to Dulles, I give myself plenty of time. I’d so rather be checked in, reading at my gate, than stressing about it. Read more of this post

Struggling

This is a little bit (a lot) all over the map. I can’t help it. I’m processing on paper. There is a lot of more than semi-random flotsam floating in my head, and I’m finding that it’s more political than usual. Sign of the times, perhaps?

I am pretty much the least political person you’ll ever meet. I’m a moderate in general. I don’t affiliate with any party. This is in part because I understand how affiliating with a group causes us to identify and tribalize in ways that aren’t always helpful. It’s also in part because I don’t think either party uniquely represents me. Read more of this post

Temporary: lunch from@gobbleinc

Today’s Daily Post challenge (which I have never participated in before) is: Temporary.

As you can see, I’ll be getting 3 servings rather than 2 from my order of @gobbleinc Spicy Lentil and Sweet Potato soup. I also picked up some Garlic Bread from Gobble to serve on the side.

The soup was an experiment- and it’s not, to be fair, my favorite Gobble dish (though EVERY dinner I’ve had so far has been absolutely fantastic … restaurant-delicious with just 15 min of preparation … so it’s hard to complain) but still it is rather good and I’m tempted to go down and eat another bowl right now and in a scant few meals (if I can wait that long) it will be gone.

Temporary indeed!

Btw if you want to try Gobble yourself and enjoy 1 free dinner for two, sign up here (full disclosure: Gobble did not pay me for this post. It’s just really tasty and easy plus they deliver everything to me so I can avoid the grocery store which I loathe — so I can’t stop raving about it. YUM.)

Bleary and blurry

At 9:00 my reminder tells me to wind down for bed. At 9:30 I should be settling in for sleep. At 10:11 I give myself a mental shake: I might not feel tired, exactly, but the morning will be terrible if I don’t, in fact, get to bed. 

So I do. But then, it’s hours of slow time. Tossing, turning. My mind is loud, churning. White noise, or Pandora, devices off, devices on, devices off again, periodically alert to small noises that mean nothing, just because I am restless and wakeful. 

11:00 12:00 1:00 2:00

All. Night. 

At 2:30 I am still awake, trying to decide whether to just scrap the whole thing. Technically 3:30ish is the cutoff, the point after which I can’t get a full sleep cycle before the alarm. 

But somewhere in that final window, I do sleep. One cycle, and perhaps a piece into the next because when the alarm goes off I am briefly confused, as if I’ve just been testing the alarm and not that it’s time, as if I could just turn it off and wait for it to alert me later when I need to get up…

Oh. That’s now. 

So I’m up; in short order readied, out the door and on the road. It’s rainy and dark – even when I arrive – and halfway there I am awake but vaguely wondering if I’d know if I was only dreaming the drive, then switching to music because having that thought probably means I’m up but who can be sure. 

Morning emails

morning meetings 

morning coffee. 

G’morning.