Tag Archives: Beauty

Copse, Volcano and Troll, Head to Head

Birch copse, with path.

Shield volcano, with path.Skogarkot

Both are heads. Literally. The word remains in English as a cob, known in cobblestones (each has a round head) or a cape, which is also a headland, and that’s the Icelandic word: hæð, or head, or height. Remember that for the culture that settled this magical place, these really were heads. And so they remain.

Troll, Just Hatched, at Dimmu Borgir

At Dawn, Iceland is Four Worlds at Once

At first, dawn is pure light.

þingvellavatn

Then it reveals another world.

Then it turns blue. The other world is still there, but white now.

Then there are colours, and mountains, as the two worlds join.

When you count the houses built at þingvellir each time Iceland enacts a new constitution, that’s three worlds. Well, four if you count the ice.

Worlds Within Worlds

 

Light tells its own stories in Þingvellir. We are here to witness. It’s no surprise the Icelanders first called Christ “White Christ.” He was the north, that place from beyond the world. Who nonetheless came, physically, as this Earth, in a harsh and beautiful mercy.


Oxarárfoss

Paradise Falls: Little Jewel of the Whale Fjord

When you turn off onto Road 5001 at the head of the Havalfjörður to visit the high waterfall Glymur, make note of the gravel parking area to your left. When you come back soggy and disappointed that Glymur is unattainable because of bad weather and high water and muck, why not stop and hike a hundred metres up the stream to Paradisarfoss? She’s a pretty little one, with a fine little forest of wild birches. You need never be disappointed in Iceland.

By Icelandic standards, that’s a very good trail there.

Well worth the trip! And no, this was not sunset. And, yes, the sky was that pink. It was just November 5, that’s all, when a stroll through the rain is like a walk through laughter.