So on to the next round of photos. Mom and H. and I headed up to the Snæfellsnes peninsula at the recommendation of a friend of mine whose family hails from that area. Now before I continue, do any of you know how exactly the word “hail” came to mean “to come from”? This has bothered me (not the fact that “hail” can be used this way, but the fact that I don’t know why it can used this way) for almost two years now, and if any of you know, please tell me. Anyway, Snæfellsnes seems to be one of the best areas to go if you’re looking to see glaciers, volcanoes, and seals all in one visit.
This is Hotel Buðir. We didn’t stay here, but we did stop here to hike around. It looks like a very nice hotel.
And here we have a nearby church. This is one of those moments when I really wish I had typed up these blog posts a long time ago, because I remember there being an interesting story connected to this church, but I don’t remember what it was. I also don’t remember what the church was called. I’m sorry about this. The poor chronology of this blog is taking its toll at last.
And here’s a wee shelter of some sort.
We met an older gentleman named Sæmundur who took us to find seals. We were told that he never failed to find seals (when he was looking for them, anyway), and sure enough, here are more seals. He told us that it was his theory that the common seals, born a greyish color, get more brownish as they age. Google neither confirms nor denies this, but Sæmunder seems like one to know these things. I also like learning the occasional bit of ungoogleable trivia. (Yes, I finally stooped to using a word that hints at the use of Google as a verb, but it was hard to pass up the opportunity to say “ungoogleable”.)
We stayed in a wee town called Arnarstapi, which has a great view of the ocean, and a big statue of a troll. For those of you who are less familiar with Icelandic (and Scandinavian) folklore, The Hobbit got it right: trolls are traditionally said to turn to stone when the sun comes up.
The bird you see below isn’t a seagull. It’s a fulmar. I was first introduced to fulmars while studying in St. Andrews. They’re relatives of the albatrosses, and they nest on the sides of cliffs. I was glad to see them again in Iceland.
And here’s a less exotic bird specimen:
Here’s a (very) small volcano. We stopped to go climb it and look inside it. You might think this inadvisable, but this didn’t occur to us. It did turn out to be safe, though.
See, there are even little flowers growing on the sides of it.
And here’s the crater. Notice it’s all green. It made me think of the “Firebird” sequence from Fantasia 2000.
Now you should have the finale from “Firebird” playing in your head. If not, here it is, conducted by the great Stravinksy himself:
I did not put in the clip from Fantasia 2000, because you should watch that on a proper screen, not a computer.
Also, for those of you who were wondering, I have finally finished my thesis, and it has been approved. So, bureaucracy permitting, I should have my M.A. this month. I’m excited.
Thanks for reading!