Tuesday, June 8, 2010

On the Road Again.

Road trip time! We rolled onto the bus this morning for 9 AM. Not the earliest start, but boy did I feel it. But the trip was by far worth it! It was a very very full day as we headed north of Rekjavik. The first stop was the Settlement Exhibition. It was a nicely set up, with an A/V representation of Egil's saga in the basement and a wonderful explaination of the settlement of Iceland in the upstairs. They integrated the use of audio guides well into the tour, and I think it helped me a lot to understand Egil's saga a lot more then before, by breaking it down and explaining the important bits. There was also a lot of really good artwork and outside there was an amazing view.

The next stop only a few minutes down the road was Skalagrim's grave (Egil's Father). It was surrounding by a lovely garden and Prof. Somerville did an amazing reading from the saga.

The next stop was Reykholt. It was a fairly sparce town, but it was the house of Snorri Sturluson, where he apparently built his own bath. It was a small home, I really don't understand how people lived in such small homes, but I guess people make do. This is where we also stopped in for lunch for a lovely soup buffet. (I know this is only halfway through our day.)

After this, it was time to take in some natural scenery, as we stopped by some amazing falls. The water was so blue! I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't seen it for myself. It was also a site of lava fields and you can see the waves in the rock formed as the lava cooled. Pretty neat. We also seemed to tranverse over the surface of the moon. Somehow the bus made it up a mountain and not only did it give some amazing pictures, I actually got to see a real glacier!!

Finally we went to Thingvellir. It is also the site where the two continental plates meet (North American Plate and the Euroasian plate). It was quite the walked down, but in a way unbelieveable. As you look over the rugged landscape with a spring running down the middle of it, it is amazing to think that a thousand years ago, every single year, people would gather and this is where they would hold government. It was the only time of the year that everyone in the entire country ever came together. The news that must have been passed there, the relationships that were started, the things traded. It is really very astounding.

And with that we headed home. I think tonight will be the day of rest, with some gathering and talking with my fellow intrepid explorers.Góða ferð!


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