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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Iceland : Prelude

Interesting fact about Iceland:
  •  Iceland lies just south of the Arctic Circle. Winter nights and summer days are long. On December 21 in the capital, the sun rises at 11:30 a.m. and sets at 3:30 p.m. On June 21 the sun sets about midnight and rises at 3:00 a.m. It never gets darker than twilight at night during the late spring and early summer.
  • Many Icelanders believe in elves.  Certain roads have been re-routed to avoid disturbing areas where elves are thought to live.
  • More than 13% of Iceland is covered by snowfields and glaciers.
  • Iceland’s main industry is fishing.
  • Iceland has twice as many sheep as people
  • Icelanders value literacy and hold the world record for number of books per capita.
  • An international study done in 2006 ranked Iceland as the “Fourth Happiest Nation” in the world.

Iceland was on my travel radar ever since the 2008 economic crisis.  It just seemed like a great opportunity to take advantage of the favorable exchange rate even thought it was still a far stretch from being a bargain destination.

However, lack of interest in cold weather had prevented me from pulling the trigger to visit Iceland.  Other places had always taken priority.  A land of ice just did not sound like a vacation destination.

It was not until this year, when all the travels we had done felt.....familiar and safe.  I was afraid that I became jaded with the travelings and craved for an adventure to somewhere foreign and unknown. We also had done quite a bit of city travels this year, and I needed a place with less people and more wilderness.

Finally, Iceland was the trip for our 4th wedding anniversary.

The day I booked the flight, I was nervous and excited.  I had high hope for Iceland.  Would it satisfy my appetite for excitement?  Would it be the adventure that I was craving for?

Some friends were puzzled by my decision to visit Iceland.  They asked, "Why Iceland? What's there in Iceland?"

"I don't know." I told them.

I knew almost nothing about Iceland, and that was exactly why I wanted to go.

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