Day 5: Myvatn and Thereabouts

IMG_3108Woke up early that morning to milk some cows in the extremely smelly cow barn behind the house. I suited up in a full jumpsuit and borrowed manure caked boots and followed the grandma out back where I was given a wet washcloth and instructed to start cleaning udders. This, by the way, was all voluntary, and not everyone’s travel cup of tea. Ted and Julian, for example, were snug in their beds while this was all going on. But when else was I going to get to milk an Icelandic cow, then try the milk right afterwards. Actually, this was more weird than anything else. The milk was still sort of warm and we are just way too used to smooth, pasteurized milk to enjoy the fresh stuff. There was a mama cow due to give birth during the night we spent there and I was really hopeful to be woken up at two am to go watch a baby cow being born, but no luck. The farm family provided breakfast for us, and I accidentally ate a delicious rice pudding because I thought it was going to be yogurt.

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There were a couple things we wanted to see around Myvatn before we left, most importantly, the nature baths. But they didn’t open for a while, so we went to Hverir aka Stink City, Iceland. It was so windy there. Julian was asleep and we didn’t want to disturb his nap just to drag him out into the cold stinky field, so we took turns walking around the bubbling mud pots and hissing steam chimneys.IMG_3184 IMG_3124 IMG_1289 IMG_0500

At the nature baths, they make you shower naked before putting on your swimsuit, which was a little difficult while holding julian and trying to wrestle both our cold wet bodies into swimsuits. Then it was just the dash from the shelter of the dressing rooms to the enticing, chalky blue water. Luckily, the temperature wasn’t too hot for Julian so we splashed around and explored for a good long while. It was really nice to not be rushing to the next thing. Before leaving, we picked up some bread baked in a hot springs called Hverabraud. It is the densest weirdest bread you can imagine and we barely ate any of our loaf, but it was fun to try.IMG_2519 IMG_2484


We drove on to Dettifoss, the biggest waterfall in Iceland-amount of water-wise. It was about a 1 mile walk from the parking lot to the falls on a very desolate snowy trail. I was not feeling super up to it, probably because of what I had eaten so far that day:

rice pudding

chocolate bar

paprika potato chips

chocolate licorice balls


2 pkgs peanut butter crackers

1 pkg cheezits

chili pepper doritos

10 strawberries

havarti cheese

half an orange

sip of ted’s coke zero

so yeah, very devoid of nutrients and I missed eating anything greeeeeen. But we pressed on and the waterfall was admittedly very impressive. We drove about two and a half more hours down the west coast to Egilsstadir, then a bit past to the horse farm where we were staying for the night. I didn’t know it was a horse farm where we were staying, so I was pretty overjoyed when we pulled up and saw the horses grazing in big fields surrounding our tiny perfect cottage for the night. It was only one small room, but it was all ours and we relished the privacy. We put Julian to bed in the shower and looked at pictures in bed until we fell asleep.IMG_2570 IMG_0491 IMG_0499 IMG_1260


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