The wi-fi at the apartment went out last night, and still wasn't on this morning when I woke up. I showered (dry floor again, go me!) and got dressed, and took my iPhone out and started walking in the direction of the city center, looking for an unsecured wi-fi hot spot. I found one just beyond the edge of the town pond and was able to log on and check email and confirm my tour reservation for the day.
The rain stopped sometime early this morning, and left behind this awesome medium-density fog all over Reykjavik. I had about an hour before the bus picked me up for the tour, so I took the big camera over to the pond to try and get shots of the swans with the foggy city scape in the background.
Ah, the swans. So graceful. So beautiful. But also so noisy. They have this melancholy two-tone honk, and they do it all day, and all night. The temperature in Reykjavik has been just right to have one window at the apartment open all the time, which means I get to sleep to the sound of swan honking. The other thing about the swans is that unless they are busy swimming from point A to point B, they have their heads stuck under the water, trolling for whatever it is they eat on the bottom of the pond (which is only about two feet deep) almost all the time. When they really get after something on the pond floor, they stick their rear ends all the way up in the air. It sort of looks like swan-butt buoys dotting the pond.
I think I got a few good shots of the swans (heads and all) on the big camera, but here's an iPhone shot of what they look like 80% of the time.
The tour today was good, but a longer drive, and I'm starting to suffer from what the Hawaiians describe as "waterfall fatigue." I've had such a high dose of gorgeous mountains, beaches, ice caps, and waterfalls that it's all starting to run together. The tour guide was a sweet lady, but she's a native Icelander, and her accent made her a bit hard to understand. I probably only got 90% of what she said. I realize now I was totally spoiled, getting to go out two days in a row with David from Iceland Horizon.
The tour only had six people on it - a couple from London, a couple from Montana, a guy about my age from Paris, and me. They originally had us in a van, but after sorting out which tours were going today from the central bus terminal, they upgraded us to one of the more luxurious mini-buses and we got to spread out a little, which was nice.
The weather cleared a little as we got out of the city, and though there was a low ceiling of misty clouds hanging around the tops of the mountains all day, we didn't see any rain while we were out hiking at the stops along the way.
I spent A LOT of time today standing right on the edge of tall cliffs, enjoying the view. Here's the rocky coastline at the place where we stopped for a picnic lunch:
And the mist over the mountain tops. This was taken through the bus window, so you can see my reflection. We stopped in some breathtaking places, but there were a lot more places where I wished we could just pull over on the side of the road for five minutes so I could photograph the view.
Tomorrow, I have to check out of my hotel in the morning, but my flight to Boston does not leave until about 5:30 PM, so I need a place to hang out for the day. Fortunately, the same tour company I went out with today offers a transfer to the airport by way of the Blue Lagoon. The lagoon is not natural - the water is the cooled runoff from the geothermal power plant next door. They initially pumped the water out into the lava field thinking it would drain away and rejoin the water table, but instead it stuck around and formed the lagoon. So, what to do? Build a day spa tourist trap there, of course!
I thought about it a lot, but I've decided not to swim in the lagoon. The silica and other minerals in the water really mess up hair, and I'm having enough trouble managing mine on this trip already. Also, I read some online reviews and people said they were shocked by how much... ahem... extra-curricular activity there was going on in the water. Ew.
Hopefully they'll have free wi-fi there, so I can do one last blog post from Iceland before I leave for the airport. We'll fly "back in time," leaving here at 5:30, flying for 5 hours, and landing at 7PM the same day. I'll spend the night in Boston, and then catch a flight to Houston the next morning.
The lunch meat from the trivia question yesterday is chicken - I know the suspense was killing you!