Staying Put

Ashley Lamb's Birds silhouetted against the sunset

Ashley Lamb's Birds silhouetted against the sunset

I decided to stay one more night, at a spot I never intended to stay in the first place.

I'm tucked in a room at the Women's School in Blönduós, a mid-century boarding school that taught handcrafts to women in the winter of their 18th year.  I don't know the full history but I do know it is a very sweet space.  It houses an artist in residence program with a focus on textiles, Ashley Lamb, who created the birds pictured above, is one of the artists working out of this space.

I was lucky enough to be offered a spot for the night and after waking up exhausted, I thought maybe I'd stay just one more night. Trading some uncovered ground for some rest and coziness, a tough decision but a good one I think.

I still got out plenty today, though maybe not covering as many kilometers as yesterday but discovering some special spots and falling ever more in love with Iceland.

Let me share with you some of the loveliness of today.

Halldóra Bjarnadóttir's typewriter

Halldóra Bjarnadóttir's typewriter

Do you see the special Icelandic letters on the keys?  I have just found þ Þ on my keyboard!  Now where is æ/Æ and ð/Ð ?  I found them all but I've lost the question mark.  I really like that old Icelandic letters, so special that they never disappeared.

Spun horsehair

Spun horsehair

Balls of spun horsehair!  Maybe not so soft to touch, but very functional for doormats and belts and such.

North Iceland

North Iceland

Last night's storm brought fresh snow to all the mountains, snow down to 200 feet or so.  They don't have a word for termination dust in Icelandic, like we do in Alaska, but they do have a word for this late part of summer that quickly slips in to winter.

Grettislaug

Grettislaug

It's been cold here since I arrived, I've often been comfortable in my winter coat and flannel lined pants.  But after soaking in this hot pot you can sit up on the beachwall in the wind and not hardly feel cold!

Looking out at Skagafjörður

Looking out at Skagafjörður

I do think this could be a great spot to camp for the Science Club trip.  Let's see:

hot pot that vikings used, check

boat launch for trip to gorgeous island, check

puffins on island, check

hiking, check

private beach, check

It was a special spot to relax and the hottest hot pot I've been in yet.

One of my outings today was to a tannery.

Sheepskins being Tanned

Sheepskins being Tanned

These are piles and piles of sheepskins saved from slaughterhouse waste and turned in to gorgeous leather and rugs...and not just in natural colors either.

Dyed Sheepskin & Fleeces

Dyed Sheepskin & Fleeces

Tomorrow I'll be back on the road, inching a little further around the country, though I realize I am only scratching the surface of one tiny region.  I'm already plotting how I can get back here soon.

IMG_2259

IMG_2259

And lastly to leave you with a photo of my Viking slip ons...I think they really are the Xtra Tuf of Iceland!

But I've still got 4.5 days to make decisions like these:

Decisions, decisions

Decisions, decisions

See you tomorrow!