Well, today is a sad day... it's our last day in Iceland - paradise on earth (except for the cold).
We got up a little later this morning, 7:45 or so, since we didn't have any plans except for lunch. When we went up for breakfast, we noticed that a group of French people had taken all the tables (leaving empty spots at each table) so we had no place to sit -which we didn't really care about, no big deal as it's not really a sit down meal. So we prepared our bread (without plates as we weren't sure which were available) and started to eat, standing up. Let me tell you, when the owners saw us standing there eating our breakfast, they were not happy. They made the French move to make room that they weren't going to have guests standing to eat. The French were insulted (not sure why, they were the rude ones). It was quite the sight! Let's say that the Icelandic people don't all seem very friendly - they are, you just don't get that warm fuzzy feeling at first...It sounded like they were really angry, when in fact they were just telling them to make room, that they weren't going to have guests treated like this. So, we sat, ate our breakfast and left for downtown Reykjavik at around 9:00.
The owner of the guesthouse had told us this restaurant (3 Frakkar) served puffin meat, which we wanted to try... so we walked around for a while, waiting for it to open so we could have lunch before leaving. Stores open late in Iceland. Nothing (except for the tourist stores) open before 11-11:30. So walking around is the only option. We go in and out of the few shops that are open, by a couple t-shirts and chocolate. We make our way to the restaurant to see it doesn't open until 11:30. We sit in the little "park" across the street and wait. It's 11:00. As we were waiting, we notice this sign - had fun trying to figure out what it meant!
At 11:30 - doors open! Yahoo! We finally get to try puffin - we've been looking for it for 2 weeks now! We enter to find a quaint little restaurant - like all the other places we went to. On the menu, fermented shark (we didn't have any), puffin breast, and guillemot breast (another wild bird), lots of different fish, fin whale, horse meat, and of course lamb. Perfect! Exactly what we had been looking for! We order a plate of puffin, a plate of cormorant and garlic bread to share.
The garlic bread was delicious! Yummy!! The puffin really doesn't taste like much of anything. The texture is bizarre as the fish is sort of raw - it's smoked but really you can say it's raw. Not what I expected!! I was thinking we would be getting a miniature chicken breast... but nope! It's dark red meat, cut in strips! The plate was very pretty. The guillemot was yummy. I didn't care for the texture. It's sort of like duck meat - but it's bloody - cooked medium rare. The sauce that accompanied the bird was good. As for the taste, I thought it tasted like beef...with an odd texture. I'm glad I got to try both. Don't think I would order them again though...
We leave the restaurant, it's about 12:30 (Times are important in this post... I hope you are paying attention!). We walk to the car, takes about 30 minutes. Gives us lots of time since our flight leaves at 5pm.
After our meal, we make our way to Keflavik to drop off the car it takes about 1/2 an hour. We get to the car rental place to drop off the car - no problem, all goes well. It's now about1:30. We go outside wait for the shuttle bus. It takes about 15 minutes. We finally get to the airport, it's now about 2:00 and we make our way to the tax refund booth to get our refund. This took about 15 minutes as we had to fill out all the forms. We then make our way to the long line so we can get our tickets.
The line moves pretty fast. We get our tickets, start making our way to security when I look down at my ticket. It says boarding time is at 2:40 and the plane leaves at 3:15. I look at my watch, it's 2:40!!! Panic starts setting in. There is 50 people in front of us! I'm feeling a little stressed (not much stresses me like this). Remi says "it's not possible, I booked for 5 pm". Well, look again- it clearly says flight is at 15:15! OMG! We are going to miss our flight for sure! We get through security in not much time - it felt like an hour but it probably took 5 to 10 minutes.
We start RUNNING through the airport as our gate is the last one at the end - D26 and the sign says it takes 15 minutes to get there. As much as I loved Iceland, I don't want to miss my flight! Run, run, run! We turn a corner and what do we see? Another line up! We suddenly have to go through another checkpoint - another line! Oh no! We get through this line and off we go running again. It's now 3:10 - we surely have missed it...
We finally get to our gate to find out they were having problems with a machine of some kind so they had just started boarding the plane! OMG!! Thank you for technological glitches!!! If it wasn't for that we would still be in Iceland! I don't know what happens when you miss your flight, if you have to pay for another? Do they just place you on next flight? I don't really want to find out this way!
We get on the bus and off we go to our plane.
During our flight, I got to sit beside a lovely young German girl that was coming to explore Canada. We chatted the whole way (a 5 hour flight) about Germany and Canada and what she could expect, what she has to eat and see. I invited her to come stay with us for a few days while in Ottawa. She was very excited about this - that way she can save a few dollars - a 23 year old just starting out - I'm sure she doesn't have much money! I found out she's an Educational Assistant - so we had lots in common. Great flight with no issues.
We got our luggage and made our way to our car. As you can see, Remi was quite happy to see our car! We had paid for parking in advance. When we got to get out, we hadn't gotten in the right way - great - find the cabin to fix our problem. Phew! I'm guessing it's not the first time someone does that -problem fixed in a minute and off we were - destination Home.
What a fabulous time we had! Already looking forward to our new adventure!
I might have one or two entries more to write - keep your eyes open!