Tonight the sun sets at 9:24pm. Tomorrow we get seven more minutes of daylight. After our ridiculously long dark winter, a shift to stretched out bright days means that everything has changed. Not only have the low grey clouds lifted and the skies cleared (mostly), but having that dazzling bright yellow ball return to the sky means something in me switched too. I’m slightly more perky in the mornings, I drink less coffee and, of course, I’m more compelled to explore.
Recently the family headed out en masse for a road trip toward Hofn. To traverse south east Iceland one must be prepared. We packed up the car: a bag full of swimsuits and towels, a bag full of snowsuits, a bag full of food, a bag full toys, and then of course, pillows, small blankets, and god knows what else.
Mr. Green and the kids had never seen the waterfalls Seljalandsfoss and Skogarfoss so I pretended I was an expert and showed off the sites. I knew the family would be impressed, but I had no idea B and M would suit up to get totally soaked behind one and then race up the hundreds of stairs to the top of the other.
In Vik, we played tag (an Icelandic preschool version) on the black sand beaches, climbed the basalt columns, hid in the black “bat cave,” and watched the massive waves crash against the shore.
But the real awe came at the glacial lagoon of Jokulsarlon, filled with massive crystal blue icebergs. Here, we listened for the small clink and crash of ice as the enormous pieces of the glacier slowly floated toward the sea. On the bay side, we walked among a path of icebergs that had washed ashore while we spotted seals at play in the surf beside us. I was smitten.
Onward toward Hofn, we stopped at Brunnholl Farm near the tongue of a glacier. We spent two nights here, eating soup with the family, petting their horses, watching the cows get milked, and too adventuring in their backyard.
On the farmer’s advice, we traveled up a dirt road to a hot springs where we sat in scorching hot water under a cool sky. Later that day, we drove on a rocky road to the edge of a glacier and somehow convinced the kids to hike with us toward the blue abyss. And between stops, we sought out herds of wild reindeer and flocks of flying swans while relishing in some good old-fashioned family time on the road.