Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Vacation: Iceland, Day 10

Iceland, Day 10

We woke up on our last day to discover that we didn't get up early enough for a last-minute whale watching tour, so I was disappointed, but I was also well-rested, so I couldn't be too sad.

We had some time to kill, though, so Birk wanted to go eat some puffin. Yes, that's absolutely a thing in Iceland. I know they're cute, but they're probably delicious. (Think about it... ducks have more fat than chicken and they're more delicious. Puffins must have a ton of fat because of the climate they live in, so they should be even more delicious!) Based on the fact that I'm still conjecturing about what they taste like, you can probably guess that we didn't get to eat puffin. It was on the menu at a place around the corner, but (1) it was closed that early in the day, and (2) it was only on the dinner menu, not the lunch menu.

We did a little shopping and wandering, and saw Hallgrimskirkja from down the street (a big beautiful church):

We reconvened at the van, drove back to Keflavik, and got onto the plane to come home. (I watched Argo, which was very good, and most of A.I. which I've seen dozens of times before.)

In DC, we went through the slow customs process (something we didn't do ANY of at the other airports... take whatever you want to France and Iceland, apparently, but be careful bringing that jelly into the States). You declare as a family, so I declared separately, since I'm not legally family to the rest of our group (yet!)... I got straight through, then had to wait because Elaine had a sandwich. (China has H7N9 right now, so they had to go through the rigorous task of... asking her what country it came from, not hearing "China," and waving them through.)

Sultan picked up Sarah, we got back to the van, and we drove home. Except... It isn't exactly a Birk family vacation until something goes very wrong.

Yup, that's a busted-up tire. It started flapping about 4 miles before the HRBT, and went ka-chunk about a mile before it. Birk pulled over, and before we could even open a door, there was a VDOT assistance vehicle pulled up behind us. The whole process of changing the tire didn't even set us back 15 minutes, and they said they'd watch us on the traffic cams through the tunnel just in case. So, as far as vacation disasters go, it doesn't get much better than that.

We were back in the apartment (and snuggling Gimli) by 1am, happy to be home but happy to have gone on such a great vacation! Back to real life now...

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