Home and recovered from jet lag, I can regale you with our final adventures and reflect on our what was a most amazing trip. The last adventure I wrote about, the Reykjanes Penninsula, did not actually end that day! We arrived home about 4:30pm, and felt we still had some oomph left in us, as well as bus tickets! We quickly freshened up and headed to the bus station. We travelled back downtown, crumpled map in hand, and headed off to Skuli Bar. Skuli had come highly recommended by staff at both Bastard and RVK. Although not a brewery, it specializes in local craft beer. The funny part, we walked around the exterior twice, trying to figure out how to get inside! As it turned out, the huge and heavy sliding door was pointed out to us by the bartender, outside having a smoke!
I had researched the craft brewery scene while in Iceland, and was so excited to be able to have a beer from Lady Brewery, their signature IPA called First Lady. Two young women started and run this small brewery, and are achieving great success! Ken, Trekkie from a waaaay back, enjoyed his beer from Borg. It was a lovely and lively little place in the old area of Reykjavík, and worthy of its recommendations.
Just three blocks away we headed to Microbar, also highly recommended. We loved the atmosphere! It is down in the basement, and really struck me as retro. The music was great, as well, old 60’s tunes. We shared a flight, but I could have had a whole glass of the Apricot Skyr Sour! Oooh, it was delicious! I was disappointed I hadn’t tried the Mango version, but had certainly achieved my “walking safely to the bus” limit! What a way to culminate our last “out and about” day!
Our last full day in Iceland involved packing, cleaning, cooking, and enjoying time with Gormur. Oh, and one last trip downtown to buy more wool! We ended up with skeins of wool packed in some of the oddest places. But it was squishy and light, an easy thing to pack, even 27 skeins!
Dear Gormur! We both fell in love with this little guy! He has personality galore, and other then his extreme dislike for cats and other dogs (we became adept at choosing direction based on whether there was another dog in the vicinity), he was a pretty easy guy to love! He certainly fit into our love of walking, and was like an energize bunny, regardless of the weather! We will miss him!
We drove to the airport for 12:30 the next day, and were able to pull over in the drop-off zone, unload our luggage, load Hólmfríður and Siggy’s luggage, and send them on their way home. We stood outside the airport, exchanging highlights of our respective trips, until they were shivering, having returned from the extreme heat of Australia! We are disappointed we didn’t get a little longer together, as we feel we truly made some friends here! Our flight home was uneventful, so nice to have a direct flight. I seem to really luck out, sitting beside interesting women with things in common both ways! We were picked up at the airport by Oleg and Jade, and arrived home to Alex, decorations by Jade, and a beautiful dinner made by Pauline!
Now that we are home, and have spent time with both family and friends, we find ourselves reflecting on our trip. On our last day, Eric asked if we had been able to do everything we had wanted, and we were able to give a resounding yes. Iceland is a wonderful place, magical in its geology, its history, its stark and untamed beauty. We would love to return and explore further, some of the more remote areas. We found the people to be welcoming and friendly, whether the cashiers at the Bonus we became “regulars” at, people we met on the street, or the amazing run club and run community. We enjoyed the lifestyle, a lifestyle committed to health, whether in food or activity. The air was clean, seldom a cigarette to be smelled, and definitely pot-free! Oh to have the trail system for walking and running, and the pool facilities! Sigh! Really and truly, the only “con” to travelling in Iceland is the cost of living. Between the cost of gas, which impacts driving, transit, excursions, and the cost of lodging and food, you do need to have a healthy budget for a vacation there. We were so fortunate to have a lovely home to stay in, and a kitchen to prepare our meals rather than eating out. With the cost of a beer (1400 kr, or over $15), even happy hour took our entertaining budget! Would we recommend a visit? Absolutely! Will we return? Absolutely! We have been on the Reykjavík Marathon site already…’til the next adventure…Albania here we come!