Iceland by the numbers, Learning with new friends

There is really no night so Wendy and I woke up and went on a photo shoot at five in the morning.
It was a delightful walk through the town and down to the bay. When we returned to the hotel we ate breakfast. The bus departed at 8 am for a long day of driving.

The first stop was a horse farm where we tried to photograph movement. Wendy’s goal for the day was to use all manual photography. She did a great job, I have a long way to go. We ate at the horse farm, Wendy was shocked that horse meat and minkes whale steaks were on the evening menu. We had a soup and salad buffet for lunch. We wondered if they change the menu for American tourists. The horses are Icelandic horses, not ponies. They have five gaits, most horses have just three. These horses make exceptional therapeutic horses. In horse country, there are 150 horses for every person.

We drove to Aukreyri, the second largest city in Iceland. Along the way we stopped to photograph
Mountains and visited sod houses, one of the shelters for early farmers.

The group is starting to jell. People are taking time to share their talents with others. Alice, who keeps a sketch journal, Bruce who is a photoshop instructor, and Bobby who is a semi pro photographer are eager too help others. After dinner tonight people were sitting in small groups sharing pictures and ideas.

The hotels on this trip are not as fancy as other tours I have taken, they are small inns in the country. The food is alway fresh local fare, lots of fish and always fresh baked whole grain breads. The yogurt, is called skyr and surpasses Greek yogurt. Breakfast is often cheese, smoked salmon, ham and tomatoes.

Iceland numbers

The population of Iceland is just over 350,000 clase to Ann Arbor on football Saturday
The land area is about the size of Kentucky.
Length of shoreline is a little larger than Michigan
Water heaters are not needed, the water is pumped from the ground to the house at 119 degrees
The fox is the only natural animal, reindeer were imported.
Corrugated steel is the house siding of choice.
All the trees were cleared by early settlers, there is some replanting happening now
3 things that cannot be counted- mountains, islands and highland lakes
Mortgage rate is 4%
Gas is $2/ liter
They are self sufficient in meat and root vegetables, much of the other food is imported

The island lore is fantastic. We passed one rock that split in two when the church tried to drive out the pagans with holy water.

It has rained all night, we will still be going out on excursions

6 thoughts on “Iceland by the numbers, Learning with new friends

  1. Hi Linda and Wendy,
    I so enjoy hearing about your journey and seeing the lovely photos. Is it cold there? You seem to be bundled up. The puffin hats are hysterical!
    Diane

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  2. Did you ride horses? Did you eat horse and whale…and if so, what were they like? Love your pictures, especially the sod houses and the steel siding…and of course sitting in the meadows. I think it is great that you are in small inns. It must be weird to have all that day light. How do the animals adjust? Great that the experts are sharing their knowledge. Keep posting. I am traveling vicariously with you.

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