helen-louise (baratron) wrote,

  • Mood:

perpetual daylight for the win :)

It's nearly 3 on Sunday morning, and it's still light outside :) Normal daylight persisted until 11pm, and since then we've been in twilight. There was a glorious pink and purple sunset as we drove through the volcanic region outside Reykjavik, but in the city itself it seems like around 8pm in the summer at home. A handful of the street lights are on, but not all, and cars are going slowly because of all the drunk people littering the streets rather than because it's dark. Don't think we have the energy to stay up absolutely all night, unfortunately, but this perpetual day is really rather awesome.

Too much fun stuff has happened in the past two days for me to be able to write anything at all comprehensive. Yesterday we went to the Blue Lagoon, a geothermally heated swimming pool filled with volcanic mud that's supposed to be really good for the skin. Seeing as whenever I fly, I always want to have a hot shower as the first thing after landing, going somewhere where I had to have a hot shower followed by a long 38 degree C bath followed by another hot shower was the most excellent plan in the world. We ate at an Indian called Shalimar where I had a curry made from courgette/zucchini and red kidney beans with mango - never had anything like that before, but it was great.

Today we wandered down Laugavegur, the main shopping street in Reykjavik. Ludy met many yarn & knitting shops. I bought some sandals from 66 degrees North, the Icelandic clothing retailer, that have PROPER TOE PROTECTION and A SOLE WITH THICK TREAD. I've been looking for such footwear forever, as while I love my Doc Martens-type boots, they do get hot in the summer. Too many sandals, even the ones designed as summer walking shoes, don't protect the toes and lack a sole with enough grip for me to feel safe. The really amazing thing is these sandals actually have BUILT-IN ORTHOTICS, so I don't need to find a way to hide mine in them. And while Iceland is notoriously expensive, these shoes cost about what less useful ones would at home.

We had coffee and lunch at Kaffi Hljomalind, a co-operative anarchist vegetarian cafe with great artwork. We walked up to Hallgrímskirkja, possibly the oddest-shaped church in the world, and were lucky enough to go up the tower before it shuts for renovation on Monday. Then we went to the Einar Jónsson Museum which is almost next door, but only made it as far as the free garden before deciding we'd had enough (his sculptures are really rather depressing). Finally we saw an odd exhibition in the National Gallery of Iceland, which I'm sure Ludy will write about in more detail. Dinner was at an Italian restaurant called Rosso Pomodoro, which did an excellent vegan pizza with roasted vegetables.

This evening we went on a bus trip they call the Golden Circle tour. It featured just the right amount of science to keep this Science Genius Girl happy. There was loads of geology in the form of volcanoes, geysers, hot springs, glaciers, volcanic craters and the aftereffects of an earthquake 3 weeks ago; the chemistry of lava (black and red); the physics of geothermal and hydroelectric power (which I already know, but it was still cool); and even some biology of native trees and the Arctic fox. We saw a huge waterfall called Gullfoss, the original Geysir (pronounced GAY-SEER) that gave its name to all the others, and we stood on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge where new rock is forming as the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates move apart. My brain is full, in a good way.

Anyway, I suppose I should drag myself to bed, although the square outside is still full of drunk people shouting "RUNTUR! RUNTUR!" and quaffing ale. Photos will follow much later - considering my existing backlog, maybe in 18 months or so :P I'm sure otterylexa and artremis will be writing entries soon, which will fill in some gaps, and both Alexa and Richard have taken several billion photos on decent cameras, which I'm sure they're intending to share.
Tags: iceland, lexa, ludy, travel, wuzzie

  • Not here any more

    The new Terms of Service for livejournal wants to regulate certain types of political content which have been deemed inappropriate for children by…

  • BiFest

    Apparently there is a BiFest on Saturday 8th April, approximately 10 minutes walk from my house. This is so very close that I really have no excuse…

  • New-to-me doctors never understand me

    Today I experienced the joy which is seeing a doctor who doesn't know me. Apparently my usual GP is on holiday somewhere warm, lucky woman. So I was…

  • Post a new comment


    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded