Our trip to Iceland on Tuesday did not begin very well.
Rush hour traffic took forever to reach our Reykjavik hotel.
We met up with those who came a day ahead.
Then some unpacked, and others went to bed.
Thanks to detailed advance planning by DENISE—and ALAN,
We all went to dinner at Cellar Matarkjallarin.
Wednesday we all walked blocks up hill to the Cafe Loki
And had a leisurely breakfast that was okie-dokie.
The rest of our 24 arrived, and met each other with little todo,
And we rode to the church top for a wonderful view.
With ROCKY to drive us, and SIGRID as our guide,
She started speaking of Iceland with obvious pride.
We left the city soon after on a warm sunny day
And visited Hranfossar Falls—magnificent I would say.
A remote black church was the next stop for our bus,
But I said we had plenty of black churches in St. Louis!
We stopped briefly for a torrent of geothermal steam,
But the old dog in the parking lot gained more esteem.
A highlight of Thursday morning was among the very best,
When we saw the magnificent cliffs on peninsula Snaefellsnes.
The natural lava arch formation here made quite a hit.
Icelanders placed one boulder on our path, and ALLEN really fell for it!
For lunch we took over the Beach House at Hellnar for our group,
And we sampled homemade bread and a tasty seafood soup.
Unless you go under water, you’re not gonna see ‘em,
So they took us near the coast to the Shark Museum.
Anyone eating green shark raw is guaranteed to have died,
But Icelanders are more patient and eat it putrified.
We departed Borgarnes Friday for a 508 step climb
To see three different craters, and exercise at the same time.
Next we rode northeast to the Gauksmyri Horse Farm Show.
We learned there are five different gates—just so you know.
Then on to an edifice dedicated to God.
It was the Vidimyri Church constructed of sod.
Then we ventured to Akureyri, the capital of the north
And toured around the city, the botanical gardens, and so forth.
On CECE and BRETT’s birthdays Saturday, we went to Husavik
For a whale watching boat cruise that could possibly make you sick.
Bur the seas stayed calm, we found a humpback that spouted, and the skies were dry.
But I wonder how they got one mechanical whale to show, as we were passing by?
This was a change from a puffin cruise due to disappearing flocks.
In the afternoon we visited Hljodaklettar’s echoing rocks.
The basalt canyons and arches created beautiful spiral patterns.
You wonder if they’re anywhere else on earth? Perhaps only on Saturn.
We walked down to a serene lake in Asbyrgi Canyon, and as we went along,
We were lucky to be treated by SIGIRID who sang a beautiful love song.
Sunday morning we rode to Lake Myratn to see a national nature reserve.
The landscape and water were gorgeous and other worldly to observe.
Next stop to see their powerful “Niagara Falls”—the name is Dettifoss.
At 200 tons of water per second, ti is truly Europe’s boss.
We passed a live sheep auction with hawkers to determine their fate—
Plus lava tubes and geothermal generators before we ate.
Our day ended at the “Waterfall of the Gods” or Godafoss.
To describe everything we saw today, I’m totally at a loss.
That night some of us hurried over to the restaurant StrikID,
Followed by a northern lights re-tour that ended up a three-act comedy.
GISLI, our driver, had us roaring with laughter the whole night long.
And even though the northern lights were elusive, we could not go wrong.
Ownership of hundreds of sheep, horses and 43 cars were to his liking.
And his heritage traced back 849 years to an original Viking.
Monday we took off early for the airport to catch a north to south cross country flight;
Then to Thingvellir National Park—an historical valley and their National Assembly site.
It was there where we saw evidence of a number of giant rifts
Where Europe and North America tectonic plates had made dramatic shifts.
Lunch at the Barmloff Restaurant at a local dairy farm
Was delicious, and everything was explained with grace and charm.
We saw eruptions and geysers repeatedly spouting steam,
And also saw Gullfoss “golden” Waterfall on a fast flowing stream.
Tuesday we started with a documentary movie of the Eyja Fjalla Jokell volcano blast;
Then on to the Skoger Country Museum where history was well cast.
The Skogafoss Waterfall was distinguished by its rainbow display,
And the Seijalandsfoss Waterfall showed up later in the day.
We saw a few puffins at the black sand beach at Reynisfjara,
And soon we’ll say about this trip “There is no tommorra’”.
The Solheimajokull sliding glacier was our last stop,
But that whole place didn’t even have a gift shop
Wednesday we returned to where we began,
And watched from the Perle looking over the land.
Thursday we floated in the famous Blue Lagoon,
And came back for precious free time in late afternoon.
The countryside is mountains in charcoal or green,
And every once in a while, a few sheep can be seen.
There’s an endless supply of small fast-flowing streams
With water appearing from nowhere—or so it seems.
Lots of what you see is not real fantastic.
Rather, it is fields of black, green, pink or white plastic.
And now at great risk of causing a mutiny,
I want to disclose, you’ve been under scrutiny!
We should thank ROCKY for our safe traveling.
His expertise kept our trip from unraveling.
SIGRID, our guide, has been superior, and so has been the weather.
But why do Icelandic horses always stand with their hind legs together?
PHIL and FRAN are ace recruiters who got 15 others to go along,
Including CHIFONG, who’s always ready with the Mighty Cougars Fight Song.
As we’ve been hard pressed to accurately identify all the places we’ve been by name,
DOTTIE, DENNIS, LYDIA, and a reluctant JUDITH, couldn’t find time for a single bridge game.
MANNY walked behind the Seljalandsfoss Waterfall to augment his bucket list,
But MAXINE had camera difficulties, so documenting this was missed.
ALBERT and JEAN had no choice but to make this Odyssey tour
Just to be able to see MARTHA who’s always traveling for sure.,
You would expect WILL was always in control and well organized,
But RITA is the true operator of them both—or so we were advised.
Some of you took full advantage of your time away from the bus,
And of those near the top of the list might be JIM and PHYLLIS.
Along the way, on a guided tour, there’s plenty of things to do,
But for PATRICIA, it’s just another country to sleep through!
One of our group was a multi-family contractor—that being JIM,
But it is obvious that MARY has thoroughly remodeled him!
Icelanders generally seem very active and healthy.
And from the prices we pay, they should be extremely wealthy!
I’ll never understand how they name their sons and daughters,
But I do understand the true meaning of Iceland is——flowing waters.
To summarize our trip, I think it would only be right
To nominate all of Iceland as a World Natural Heritage Site!
Dennis L. Whitmore 9/7/2017