Friday, July 29, 2011

Random Thoughts on Iceland

Surprisingly, Iceland has 150!! golf courses. One for every 2000 people.

There was a moment Tuesday when I wanted to tell myself, "This is great, I really have to come back in the summ...-er. Hmmm."

Seriously though, I really would love to get back.

Iceland is a very easy place to lose track of time. Not one day went by where we didn't look at our watches to tell ourselves, "It's 9:30 already?"

Reykjavik is a very compact walkable city. The suburbs that are beyond the city, however, may be in for a short lifespan given the economic problems that emerged in 2008.

Speaking of 2008, about 4500 families lost their homes because of mortgage issues. The problems there seem to be relatively hard to notice but their currency has plummeted two about 2/3 of its pre-collapse value.

Apart from that there is a feeling that there is a rather unhurried pace of life. It might be a matter of getting 99% of their energy by green means - geothermal and wind primarily - and essentially a passive method when compared to oil and gas.

It was remarkable at times to realize how transient the land itself actually is. We drove on one road that had been whipped together in the space of a week to replace a road that had been washed away by flooding caused by volcanic activity.

The water in Iceland is so pure that they have had some problems with their sewage systems. Matter just doesn't get broken down by any bacteria or minerals in the water. To ensure that the water systems don't corrode, sulfer is actually added to the water. The purity is a consequence of glacial water filtering through the lava into ground water.