Wednesday, September 2, 2009

ICELAND SAGA: Tjornin and the Metal Viking Boat

I know, I know, I'm not churning out my Iceland posts fast enough.  We got back three weeks ago and I'm only on day 4 here!

Very near our hostel was a small park featuring a man made lake called Tjornin ("tjorn" meaning "pond").

It was one of our favorite places in Reykjavik to walk around.  There were always ducks, seagulls, and geese around, and it was fun to see them go about their business.  Watching the ducks casually motor themselves around the water provided endless entertainment for us, especially when they put their heads under water to look for a snack, and their little butts popped up.  We broke into giggles as their little feet kept paddling in mid air.  It's the simple things I tell you!  The small lake is located at the edge of the city and provides a lovely view of the southern skyline.

During the afternoons at Tjornin the seagulls get quite disorderly.  We never fed them ourselves, but we did witness on more than one occasion people feeding the gulls and then trying to get up and walk away.  As they walked along the lake the seagulls followed them, flying around their heads looking for more hand outs.  I snapped a picture of a little boy and his mom unsuccessfully trying to escape.  I think a couple of the birds actually grabbed the boys' shirt.

There are just a ton of them!
A seagull and a duck are having an argument, and the duck is chasing the gull off.
This was our last day in Reykjavik before moving on to the Westfjords, so we decided to hit up the museums.  Before going to the National Gallery and the National Museum (where there were some really awesome large black and white prints of children working on fishing boats in the early 20th century), we visited the Saga Museum.  This is a fairly new museum in which there are incredibly life-like human replicas decorated to portray the history of Iceland.  Again, I didn't take pictures of these because I wouldn't hang them on my wall, and again, I'm kicking myself.  There are some pretty neat pictures here.   The building that the museum is housed in is really cool.  It's called Perlan ("The Pearl" in English).  The building is a glass dome which sits on 4 huge water heaters.

In the evening we planned on going on "The Original Haunted Walking Tour of Reykjavik," which sounds cheesy but I was totally excited about it.  Unfortunately, the guide only took cash, which we did not have, but he was NOT very nice about it and it was like $20 a person.  We've decided that the tour is a novelty scam.  Instead we went to a co-op cafe/bar where we each had a beer that tasted like a tortilla chip.  There were pig tails painted on the bathroom mirror, as shown in this totally unsuccessful photograph.  I guess I should have held the camera above my head.

Random building in Reykjavik that looks like art.   
Also that evening, we walked to the waterfront to see SunCraft, a metal sculpture of a viking ship.  Perhaps these images will better illustrate how light it stays in Iceland than the picture of the trees I peed in.  The images were snapped at 10:30 p.m.

Statue at the center of the city.
Statue down by the waterfront.  It's like the Immigrants on The Hill!
Stay tuned!  The next post to come is about puffins!

1 comment:

  1. That 10 pm light is unreal. I would lose my mind!