Like the country itself, our reason for deciding to spend the holidays in Icleand is a bit obscure.
I wanted to kick 2016 out the door with an extra special bit of umph, because it was one of my worst years ever and then to bring in 2017 with a new twist.
I thought seeing the Northern Lights, something I've always wanted to do would be a great thing to do to make 2016 a bit less shitty. I thought that being somewhere "cool" for New Year's Eve would be a good way to bring in the New Year.
Oh, and I wanted to see polar bears, Santa's workshop and....
I can't even begin to remember all of the different scenarios and "tours" I was cooking up. I know St. Petersberg, Helsinki, Alaska, Banff, Quebec City and several others came up.
Cindy put her foot down and decided we had to keep our travels in one country. After I did some more research and found a great self-drive tour of Iceland, we were in agreement and booked the trip.
A couple of weeks later after we continued doing research, we both realized that there would only be a few hours of daylight each day and that therefore meant that we would be driving in the dark on icy roads every day for several hours and our window of oppurtunity for enjoying the sights would have to be precisely timed and mapped out.
After a couple days in Iceland and on said tour, we've come to realize that the drive times were based on Summer, Spring and/or Fall travel, not in the dead of winter where the daylight hours are the shortest and road conditions the worst.
Starting It Off Right...Or at Least Attempting To
We left our aapartment in Atlanta with plenty of time to get to the airport, regardless of holiday traffic, getting through securtiy (I usually breeze through security, but this time got flagged, my bag searched and a bottle of "Dream Water" confiscated) and get to our gate.
And we did it.
We got to JFK and managed to get our bags from the luggage turnstyle and get them rechecked in. (We didn't do a direct flight or even a connecting flight because of the outrageous expense.)
And then our flight was delayed for two hours which turned into almost 3.
We had a reservation at the Blue Lagoon at 8 a.m. which couldn't be changed. Thank goodness that Icelanders are a casual folk, because we rolled in at 10:30 and they had no problem with that.
ONE OF THE 25 WONDERS OF THE WORLD
Soak Your Blues Away
I was sleep deprived and somewhat delirious: add to that driving in icy conditions after not having been in snow for several years and growing up in So Cal and even the 20 minute drive was a bit stressfull.
It was a surreal and magical experience.
After the soak, we headed back to the capital and our first chance to get a good night's sleep. But first we would take a quick stroll, have a wonderful meal, and Skye and I would buy traditional Iceland wool caps.
And then off to bed....for 11 hours. The longest I've slept in years.
So Much to Blog So Little Time
I'm finally getting around to writing a post on my new blog and I have so very little time before the family comes down to delve into our Christmas stockings.
You see stuffing stockings is sort of a big deal in my family. Growing up, I would sometimes get better and even more gifts with the stockings, than what was under the tree.
And I could get an early peek at them!
And we could take them up to my parents bedroom early in the morning before they were ready to come down and be with us (my little brother and me) when we would open up the gifts under the tree.
I know weird family traditions. However...
In keeping with tradition...but you say it's only the 21st of December!
Here's the thing; we leave for our trip to Iceland tommorow morning and we certainly wouldn't want to rush the stocking celebration, hence stockings hung on the bookcase with care....
On the 21st of December....
Recently Cindy and I; and Skye as well, have been pondering where we want to end up or at least call home for the next several years. We agreed on Atlanta, for at least a year. After that, I was pushing for our nomad lifestyle based out of a place next to water; New Orleans, Key West, Seattle, just to name a few. Skye was missing So Cal. And Cindy was also all over the map with Vermont and other New England sites, the Pacific Northwest, North Carolina.
But for now home is here in Atlanta and it was full of events and things to do. Because I am pressed for time, a photo collage or parade will have to suffice.
We Need More Cowbell...Or Photos...Or Narrative
On second thought the photo slideshow is rather pathetic and doesn't begin to capture my December.
There was a Santacon pub-crawl, a speak-easy "prohibition" party, helping out a pal to get her new studio space up and running, signing up for various athletic endeavors, packing and shopping; oh and too much time on Facebook, dealing with unemployment paperwork and bureaucracy, passport stuff, oh blah, blah, blah
Jon Danniells is an adventurer and traveler, a teacher and student, a husband and a father, a cook and a farmer, a "week-end warrior" (very amateur athlete) and has not earned any money on these labors of love.When I googled myself what showed up first was my IMDB listing, which is basically a resume for my 20 and then some year career in film, for which I fortunately do get paid.