Honeymoon in Iceland

Hey folks! It’s been a long time, and MUCH has happened since I last wrote here. Most importantly……

I got married! This is old news to most of you, but Beth and I got hitched on May 6th, and it was a delightful day! We kept the wedding small and had a brief “mini-moon” in the mountains, as we didn’t want to have to plan a wedding and a big trip all at once. That was very smart, as neither Beth nor I need to have excess stress in our lives. It’s not that we fight, or have trouble planning things together, but both of us are experienced enough to know our limits: when things stop being wonderful and exciting and start becoming overwhelming and burdensome.

Our plan was to have a “real” honeymoon later in the year. We thought about recreating and relaxing in the warmth of Cabo, but decided instead to check off a place in both of our bucket lists: Iceland. Now, my friends have divided into two camps on the whole Iceland thing: the first camp is thrilled and perhaps jealous of our adventure to one of the most geologically interesting places on the planet, the “land of ice and fire,” the place where they eat fermented shark meat that smells like ammonia. The second group (perhaps swayed by the shark meat thing) looks at us with puzzlement and asks: why the hell would you go to Iceland??? Let me answer that question.

The main reason to go to Iceland is that the geology is AWESOME! My daughter has a degree in geology (love my science nerd girls) and is incredibly jealous of our trip. For a detailed explanation of the geophysics and tectonics of the island, go to this interesting article. Basically, the tectonic plates that pushed Europe and Africa away from North and South America now form a ridge in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, where the magma comes up to the surface and push the two sides a bit further apart each year. The biggest island where this occurs in the Atlantic is Iceland. This means that the island has extreme geology: hot springs, geysers, mountains, and especially volcanoes. Just this summer there was an eruption of the Litli-Hrútur volcano (now gone quiet), which was relatively small as far as Icelandic eruptions go. Here’s some cool footage of the wall collapse in July:

No, we don’t expect more volcanic activity, but the landscape caused by such a geologically active area is quite stunning. Think of it as Yellowstone Park on an island. Substitute whales for buffalos, pretty horses for grisly bears, and throw in words and letters that are way too complicated for normal human anatomy, and you get the picture.

So the plan is to use this blog to document our trip. We leave today, flying from Columbia to Chicago, Chicago to Iceland, arriving on Sunday morning to with a temperature drop of over 50 degrees (Fahrenheit). We’ll spend a couple of days in Reykjavik (the place where most Icelanders live), and then travel the “Ring Road” around the island (which is about the size of the state of Kentucky). We are going to whale watch, hike craters and mountains, hike a glacier, see the wildlife (hopefully some puffins), possibly see the Northern Lights (although it may still be too early in the year to see it), and see whatever other cool stuff there is in this exotic location. I’ll put pictures on Facebook too, but blogging allows me to be more wordy and tell stories about things that happen. I like to be wordy…but you probably already know that.

Happy to have you join our adventure.

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