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On to Greenland

Friday, August 28th, 2009

Cloud cover from leaving Iceland until about 1/2 hr before reaching Nuuk the capitol of Greenland so didn’t get to see Iceland from the air as arrived after dark & left in the cloud. Planes are getting smaller as this flight was in a prop driven Dash 8-100, don’t know why the 100 as it only carries 35 passengers?

No sign of any customs personal when we landed just off the plane across the tarmac, in the terminal & out to the taxi lane. Couldn’t find much hotel info on the web, looking up much of any info on this country is a chore, it’s  as if it doesn’t exist, so just used the tried & true hotel finding method, ask the taxi driver, works every time. Got the last room but got a room at the first hotel we tried. Haven’t had the nerve to convert the price yet as in Iceland I was warned it was expensive here & it’s a NICE 4*, Hotel Hans Egede, but what to hey These 2 countries blew a hole in my budget a long time ago but in Iceland’s case it was sure worth it & how many people can say they have visited Nuuk let alone Ilulissat, bragging rights don’t usually come cheap plus I am sure there will be some fantastic country to see.

From the flight in looks like the country is glacier covered except at the coast & this is southern Greenland. Desolate looking place with the land scrubbed to the bare rock by the glaciers & the town at first glance resembling a northern construction camp. On closer inspection this capitol of 16,000 is a bit more than that brightly colored buildings your basic primary colors reds, blues, whites & the odd yellow.

Can see three tower cranes from my hotel room window so things aren’t slowed to a standstill by the recession, also some residential construction in Iceland.

Had planned on a boat tour of the area but as they need a minimum of 4 to run it & only 2 signed up it didn’t go so just catch up on my journal & explore Nuuk a bit then tomorrow off to Ilulissat.

The taxi driver came through with flying colors as the hotel he brought me to is smack dab in the center of activity here in Nuuk. I just love good taxi drivers as they tend to have a better knowledge of all facets of a city or town than any one else. Of course having been one on several occasions in different parts of Canada might  prejudice me just a tad or the fact that when I am in Ontario my daily driver is a Checker in Yellow Cab livery.

It’s just an easy little stroll down to the shore where one finds for today’s trivia “Santa’s Post Office and the World’s Largest Letter-box where letters to Santa from all over the world arrive.”, the National Museum of Greenland, Hans Egede’s house (don’t be so lazy Google him) & the other main sights & shopping district & market of Nuuk.

A nice sunny fall (Canada weather) day relaxing, informative & productive at the same time, Found further proof of the mini ice-age that lasted from around 1350-1850 so once again our period global warming climate change is just a whim of nature, NOT anything man made as some ego-maniacs with a personal agenda would have us believe, Nuuk is a bustling little city where you can still smoke in the working man’s bars.

Oh yeah & one thing I have never seen else where that should be mandatory every where a sign at the entrance to the restaurant here in the hotel in international symbol a circle with a line through the picture of a cell phone (NO CELL PHONES). Must be needed as at breakfast this morn when sign was turned around there was a guy with not one but TWO Crack berries!!!

Manaña a 3 hr flight to Ilulissat north of the Arctic Circle.

¿Who ‘D Thunk it?

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

Iceland comes off waaayyyy better than I thought in my wildest dreams, absolutely LOVE it & if I were 20 yrs younger might be scheming a way to stay here but at this point in my life it has one fatal drawback. NO palm trees!!!

Don’t rely on my numbers as have had info overload the last couple days (just google them) but approx 60% of the hydro is being generated by geothermal, can’t get any “greener” than that! Also hot water is being piped to Reykjavik where 60% of the population lives & surrounding area to heat homes. That’s about 85% of the total 350,000 population making it 3 people/sq km. Not crowded, lots of elbow room.

The scenery is fantastic from the lava fields to the good farmland in the shadow of the volcanic mountains with their numerous glacial fed waterfalls to the black sand desert with the accompanying black sand beaches on the south shore. The Marlboro man would be right at home here.

My 5 days here was way too short, as I am sure I will find with other places. To do Iceland justice you need to bring some camping gear (there are lots of guest houses in populated areas but every where isn’t), rent a car & get out & about minimum 2 weeks for a quick look or as the manager here says a month to see the whole island, more to really explore.

Trivia that proves Al Gore & David Suzuki are way out to lunch & give way more importance to man than he deserves.

When Iceland was first settled in the 900’s farmers were growing barley & wheat then in the 1500’s the “mini ice-age” came along & grains would not grow here, couldn’t get into Henry Hudson’s Bay for many years either. Then in the 1930’s barley was successfully grown again, now for the last couple years 1 farmer has managed to grow wheat again. Yeah the climate has warmed up to near where it was 1000 yrs ago when there weren’t any cars emitting greenhouse gasses. Just one more proof that our governments are fear-mongering to get more tax dollars out of us!

When I wrote this forgot a really important discovery, I never cared for lamb but on trying Icelandic lamb that all changed. Their lamb is  free ranged out in the mountains, never inside but fed on the natural rangeland grasses & melts in your mouth the Canadian facsimile can’t come any where near the taste & texture. 

Sadly I have a flight booked for morning & must bid adieu to this hypnotising land to continue my adventure. But just might return someday?

Must have been

Monday, August 24th, 2009
a Viking in a past life! Ever get that feeling not so much that you have been some where before but that a place is as it should be with no real surprises & you just kind of fit in? That's ... [Continue reading this entry]


Saturday, August 22nd, 2009
After 6 1/2 hrs of flying time which took all day + a 4 hr time change finally landed in Reykjavik at 0:29 yesterday, was tired so took a cab from airport instead of the bus but since it's 49 ... [Continue reading this entry]

A change for the better

Thursday, August 20th, 2009
Guess 3 days of bad luck was enough & RTW is starting off on the right foot. Bus was repaired gratis this morn, computer guy was in so everything in storage am using 'puter now. Spent a great evening meeting some forum posters. ... [Continue reading this entry]


Wednesday, August 19th, 2009
It just gets worse. Day started not bad friend fixed charging problem on the Checker which I wasn't expecting then the heater cores for WC van were just being finished when I got there to pick them up pero (but) ... [Continue reading this entry]


Tuesday, August 18th, 2009
Just can't believe the level of incompetence being displayed by people dealing with the public in Ontario! Went in to pay the insurance premium on the WC bus that the insurance Co finally decided it could insure only to be ... [Continue reading this entry]

Mini Road Trip Ontario

Saturday, August 15th, 2009
One last short road trip of just over 600 mi to finish up a few details. Delivered my last school bus to a good friend outside Ottawa & made an early Christmas for an 8 yr old. Dropped off my Mongolian ... [Continue reading this entry]

Road Trip USA

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009
Just finished an interesting 5 day, 1500+ mile trip covering 5 states, the crops looked to be doing well in most areas & no really visible signs of the economic downturn to the casual visitor. However prices seem to have ... [Continue reading this entry]


Sunday, August 2nd, 2009
Insurance + visa costs add significantly to trip costs! * means US$ RBC Travel insurance 10 months                                       $1208.00 Canadian Passport renewal                           2 photo       $ 87.00 Russia  Double entry 175 Bloor St E  3day serv 1 photo    $226.00 + trip - Toronto invitation letter                        ... [Continue reading this entry]