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  • Day9

    Day 9 - Phalluses, Whales & Happy Hour

    May 19 in Iceland ⋅ ⛅ 11 °C

    Again.

    After a decent nights sleep, we struggled to get up & ready at 9.20am for breakfast. For the next 40 minutes we gorged ourselves on toasted rye bread & a selection of preserves, coffee, juice & yoghurt. Probably our best breakfast yet.

    We were soon after heading out for my guided tour of Reykjavik. First stop was Hofdi House, a quaint whitewashed building located along Reykjavik’s scenic waterfront. It is famous for the fact that a major world historical event took place here in 1986 when Mikhail Gorbachev and Ronald Reagan met & signed a deal to end the Cold War.

    We continued along the waterfront, calling into Harpa for more use of their plush toilets before heading to the Icelandic Phallological Museum, better known as the ‘Penis Museum’. It is unique in that it is the only museum of it’s kind in the world & it had an impressive display of 280 penises from 93 different species of animals including man. It was interesting, but probably more noteworthy for it’s novelty value.

    After, we returned to Harpa, just in time to catch the Hop On Hop Off Bus to the Whales of Iceland Museum in the Grandi Harbour District of Reykjavik. The museum contained life-sized rubber models of 23 whale species that have been seen in Icelandic waters. Included in the entrance fee was a 30 minute audio guided tour of the exhibits. It was an expensive tour for audio content, but the exhibits were particularly impressive.

    We left the museum just before the Hop On Hop Off Bus was scheduled to stop outside, but as we exited the museum, we saw our bus drive straight past several minutes early. Brilliant. We walked around Reykjavik port & arrived at an earlier stop to re-catch our bus, now over the 24 hour period we had paid for.

    We stayed on the bus until we arrived at Hallgrímskirkja, a Lutheran parish church. At 73 metres high (244 ft), it is the largest church in Iceland and among the tallest structures in Iceland. The church is named after the Icelandic poet and clergyman Hallgrímur Pétursson (1614-1674), author of the Passion Hymns.

    We went inside to what can only be described as a very minimalistic interior. It contained a simple alter, rows of cushioned pews & a huge organ (I’d seen enough of them for one day). Not a stained glass window in sight. Jackie wrote a little message to be read out at the next service.

    After a number of photos, particularly of the impressive spire, we popped into a nearby sculpture garden then headed down to Reykjavik’s Hljómskálagarðurin park, renowned for its birdlife, sculptures, and serenity. Beyond the lake, known as ‘The Pond’ we popped into the City Hall, then made our way back through the Old Town.

    At a shop called 66 Degrees North, Jackie bought an expensive rucksack as her birthday present from me. We are going to try & get reimbursed for the tax, but that will be a drama for another day!

    Having satisfied ourselves that we had seen all we wanted to see in Reykjavik, we returned to our favourite Happy Hour bar to sample more of their half-price wares. We enjoyed 4 pints each of their strong white ale with a slice of orange floating on top.

    Around 7pm, we headed home & stopped off for a ‘traditional’ Icelandic kebab & chips that yet again we shared!!! We then returned back to our hotel for free coffee, biscuits & sweets to end the evening.

    Song of the Day: Happy Hour by The Housemartins.
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    Andy and Teresa Mays

    I dread to think what may be in that message Jax left. Probably something about you smelling the same as the eggs earlier in the trip!! Safe journey home the pair of you!!

    5/20/22Reply