Iceland. I ate a chip from a chunk of a 100,000-year old glacier ice. It was served on a tray. I was on a boat (actually an amphibious vehicle) in the glacier lagoon of Jokulsarion. The day was full of cold wind and rain. It was good that the sun wasn’t shining because that gray sky made the glaciers look blue.
The guide Veronica held a huge (12×8 inch) piece of ice in her bare hands throughout her 15-minute talk. She said only 10 percent of the glacier is visible while the other 90 percent is under water. She said the glaciers move about 100 centimeters per year, but much faster in the last 10 years because of global warming and salt.
The Icelandic land mass was created after the extinction of the dinosaurs yet looks quite ancient in places. Time is relative. The land surfaced when the North American plate and the European plate came toward each other and forced up the small Icelandic plate.
Speaking of plates, the breakfast pot of cooked barley with cinnamon and raisins was quite good. The Pylsur frankfurter was half lamb and half pork, in casing, served on a roll with crunchy toasted onion flakes, mustard, ketchup and a Russian salad dressing-like condiment. While hotdogs and barley were plentiful, it seemed that Iceland runs on soft-serve ice cream the way New England runs on Dunkin Donuts.
I saw my first double rainbow in Iceland. A museum featured a two-headed lamb on its wall. The green blobs in the starry sky faded and glowed and then changed shape; this repeated for a half hour one evening. I went inside that night and sat with a glass of the local brandy called Brennivin, “the original Icelandic spirit.” I decided I had witnessed some sort of outer space communication to the whales.
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