My Iceland Story…

There are so many places I would love
to visit in my lifetime. Many I hope to eventually get to see and some I
probably will not have the opportunity to. For many years the top item on my
travel bucket list has been to visit Iceland. And it always seemed like it was
beyond my reach for whatever reason. 4 days ago I got to make that dream a
reality. Words can really not express what I felt there. The landscapes we saw,
the people we met, the stories which will hopefully forever be engrained in my
memory, the photos documenting our adventures, major camera troubles as the
weather is so extreme, petting Icelandic horses, Geysir which is where the name
“geyser” comes from, so many waterfalls, the wretched (but you get
used to it) smell of sulfur, the taste of a cool waterfall and the taste of the
salty ocean, bathing in hot springs, showering naked in front of strangers,
muddying up your snow pants to the point it looks like you shit yourself,
walking 2 hours to find an abandoned plane wreck, running fully clothed into
the ocean at the black sand beach and dipping into a freezing lake in just a
bathing suit, pronouncing Eyjafjallajökull with lots of help from the video I
took of our new friend Egill and replaying that over and over (I swear I got it
but someone I know will tell you otherwise ), finding a great new song in a CD (which I brought back) left
in our rental car, bringing back actual pieces of Icelandic rocks, black sand
and ocean water, driving in the fog in zero visibility, walking down to the
glacier lagoon and hearing the splashing & grunting of seals we could not
see except we shined a flashlight on them and did see their eyes staring back
at us, peeing outside in nature in the pitch black cause you’re in the middle
of nowhere happy you took some napkins from Domino’s the day before, finding
the dirt road with a flashlight because again zero visibility, hunting for and
finding the Northern Lights on 2 nights, watching the green lights dance for us
with the naked eye however brief that was, buying ALL the souvenirs, talking to
people from so many countries, eating fermented shark chased down by a shot of
Black Death (Brennivin) - not as bad as it sounds, eating the most vile tasting
fish jerky - much worse than it sounds, trying so many different Icelandic
dishes, eating 2 of the best hot dogs I’ve ever eaten in my life, drinking
unique cocktails like the Cocoa Puffs White Russian and different types of
Icelandic beer, getting pretty drunk & walking back to the hotel, sleeping
in a hotel room the size of a closet, having reservations made for us at a
really fancy Icelandic restaurant (Kol) by Egill, realizing how hot Icelandic
dudes are and how the women aren’t as gorgeous as I (or Rich) expected, finding
the same dude in our flight there, hot springs & northern lights tour and
flight back, learning about volcanoes and walking on sand & ash which
actively erupted only 6 years ago, finding the secret waterfall and taking that
in which has to be my most favorite place on earth now, snow & ice, sleet
& rain, sun & rainbows, hot & cold….

I spent 4 days there but
Iceland has kept a piece of my heart. I will return with more time next time. I
never knew how anyone could fall in love with a place you’re not actually
linked to, but I get it now. I love you Iceland!

I want to thank my awesome
friend Richard who when I asked if he
wanted to take this trip with me months ago, because I always hesitated to take
it on my own, said fuck yeah and our trip was booked within a matter of hours!
Finding a good travel buddy isn’t an easy task and Rich you’ve been the best.
So again THANK YOU. Can’t wait for the next adventure.

one bad thing I will also never forget about this trip is the second we get to
Keflavik airport after a few days of no wifi Rich logs on to Instagram and
shows me that there was a bombing earlier that day in the airport in Brussels.
My brother Alejandro was in Brussels for the past 2 weeks
and came back yesterday. Not knowing his whereabouts while we were at the
airport and taking a 5 1/2 hour flight back home with that in the back of my
mind left me with such mixed emotions. The uncertainty of not knowing for sure
if he was ok until I landed, but rather assuming he was because he had a
layover in Moscow before coming back to NY, was the worst I’ve felt in a long
time. The explosions went off only a few hours after he departed for Moscow.
The time differences really mess with your head when you’re trying to see if
the math adds up. Luckily he is ok!!

On the road…

Sólfar ~ Sun Voyager

Reykjavík as seen from Hallgrímskirkja

Aurora Borealis



Þingvellir National Park

A Coke and a smile…

Behind Seljalandsfoss

Reykjavík as seen from Hallgrímskirkja

My buddy Rich and me ~ see you soon Iceland

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