Gullkistan and the Residents

Four years later

returning back to Gullkistan in Laugarvatn,

a new location and accommodations

IMG_1601
IMG_1601

Eight residents this time:  some here longer than others

with the stay group of four:

13932944_10208425357764372_8774029736691908919_n
13932944_10208425357764372_8774029736691908919_n

I have savored my time here.

14192028_10208503773844725_6895962185107560978_n
14192028_10208503773844725_6895962185107560978_n

To the Westfjords

An unexpected and wonderful trip with Aegir and Linda to the Westfjords,
a rugged, desolate & remote, sparsely populated region of Iceland where
fewer tourists venture. Some highlights below:

Westfjords; our itinerary
Westfjords; our itinerary
Linda on ferry
Linda on ferry
western most point in Europe
western most point in Europe
Latrabjarg Cliffs
Latrabjarg Cliffs
Raudasandur Beach
Raudasandur Beach
Black church
Black church
driftwood
driftwood
Kleifakallinn - varda like sculpture who guards travelers
Kleifakallinn - varda like sculpture who guards travelers
vardans
vardans
varda 2
varda 2
hermit's view
hermit's view
cod heads for the fish soup market in Nigeria
cod heads for the fish soup market in Nigeria
seal by ocean's edge
seal by ocean's edge
camper by glacier
camper by glacier
westfjords view
westfjords view

Fall er fararheill to the Westfjords

There is an Icelandic saying "fall er fararheill" which means if something bad happens at the beginning of the trip, the rest will be great. This was our experience setting out for our unexpected adventure to the Westfjords. The rented SUV tire exploded minutes up the road from Gullkistan in Laugarvatn (where the residency is).

Back to Iceland 2016

Iceland again!?! The first time I visited, I was struck by the rawness of Iceland's land—a landscape of elemental forces (frumkraftur) in shape of volcanoes, geysers, glaciers, rivers, waterfalls, ice and wind, continually unmaking and making itself. It's relatively pristine and unspoiled still (in spite of the recent surge of tourism) and  offers a great abundance of solitude where one can see and feel without.  It's a place where I can get in touch with essence, washing away the distractions of  white noise and visual disruptions: nothing is screaming for my attention—only empty spaces of blues.

Rebecca Solnit in her book, The Faraway Nearby, wrote that "These are the forces that will flourish no matter what goes extinct, where the poisons migrate, and how the weather changes. The sun will rise, the winds will blow, the waves will lick the shore, the earth will tilt on its axis so that there is more light in summer, less in winter, rains and snows will fall, if not as they used to, and the waters will turn to solid ice and melt again. This is the world that existed before life and will exist after us."

Beginnings and ends: to get a sense of what was and what is to come.  This is the place to feel that whatever it is—is not readily at hand but is there nonetheless.

So I've returned to Gullkistan for another residency in Iceland to explore and develop thoughts and ideas inspired on earlier trips.

 

13903318_10210516290370495_1109738084980185864_n

13906707_10208309312943324_8264015108131054862_n

Some of those ideas & hopes:

*A trip to Vestmannaeyjar islands, formed by volcanoes 11,000 years ago except for Surtsey, the newest addition in 1963. Want to see a beginning.  Heimaey is the only inhabited island. Its  little town and shelter island lies between klettur (escarpments) and two ominous volcanoes, Eldfell and Helgafell.  I continue to follow the winds of 'Eld'.

*A trip to Landmannalaugar, the largest geothermal field in Iceland. Its weird peaks are made of rhyolite, a mineral-filled lava that cooled unusually slowly, causing amazing colors.

*To revisit the land and stories of the beserkers on the Snaefellness Peninsula and relate to images of kami-kazi pilots of WWII and arctic terns.

*To search for evidence of driftage rights on beach shores (all the benefits of the ocean).

*To spot and photograph vardans, directional markers while traveling, walking, finding and sensing way.

*A navigational practice of the Vikings using icelandic spar (for sunstones). Some associations to consider: optics, light, refraction

*North American tectonic plate; relationship of Ca to Iceland on opposite sides (here(t)here)

*Collect basalt images.