Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Let the Scandinavian Adventure Begin!

After splitting work weeks on our last few trips, Mark and I finally wound up with a full week off together. We figured we'd make the most of our time and decided to cram three countries into one trip. First up: Iceland!

Icelandair doesn't offer direct flights out of Dulles on Mondays, so we had to fly JetBlue up to Boston and connect there. It took FOREVER to get off the ground at Dulles because there was debris on the runway. They finally got everything cleaned up and planes started moving again.

The delay on the ground at Dulles meant that our once leisurely connection became a sprint through the terminal. Boston is my least favorite airport for connections (if you're connecting to an international flight you have to leave the terminal, cross a street, reenter the airport, clear security again, and then find your gate). We didn't even have enough time to grab something for dinner before boarding the flight, so we wound up splitting a sandwich that Mark bought on the plane.

One plus side to taking an overnight flight way up north, though: we got to see the Northern Lights from the plane! They were green and shimmery, and it was a very cool way to start the trip.

Of course, my good camera was stowed away in the overhead bin and my cell phone camera wanted no part of picking up any of the show. Just pretend that you can see the Northern Lights in this picture...I swear they were there. Really.

We got to Iceland just fine, but clearing security took a while because some of the workers were on strike. We eventually got our passports stamped, grabbed our bags, and got on the Flybus to our hotel. We changed things up and stayed at the Hotel Marina in downtown Reykjavik this time; there was an actual marina with drydocks right out the front door of the hotel. Our original room wasn't going to be available for a while but we lucked out, upgraded to a different room, and after inhaling breakfast went right upstairs and passed out for a few hours.

We went to the Blue Lagoon later that day. I think the bus originally forgot to pick us up; we spent a half hour waiting outside with a Scottish family with some very screamy kids before we gave up and went inside to get the hotel guy to call the bus company. (This was the same hotel guy that we had earlier heard telling a group of English ladies why he wasn't attracted to English ladies...because he doesn't like the way English people look. Nice to know that jerky hipsters have made it to Iceland, too.) The bus finally came for us and we got there just a little later than we expected. Still plenty of time to enjoy it, though!   :)

Picture winds so gusty that there were waves (first time I've seen that here!), and cold rain. It was still a great afternoon, though! We got a couple drinks from the swim up bar and spent the afternoon finding all the super warm spots in the water and hanging out in the sauna. It was actually my first time in a sauna, and I don't know why the heck I waited so long...I really liked it. After a few hours we got cleaned up, had dinner at the restaurant on site, then took the bus back to Reykjavik. It wasn't too late, so we grabbed a couple really tasty drinks at the hotel bar before heading back up to the room to pass out.

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