Saturday, 2 August 2008

The Icelandic Adventure ~ Part Five

Current mood:  worried

After Myrdalsjokull, we continued on to the beach at Vik.  It was a beautifully scenic beach, but that wasn't the reason we were there.  We were looking for seabirds on the cliffs.

We were warned that the sea came in very fast, and that a woman had been killed by the rising tides there not so long ago, when she had got stuck in the cave shown above.  We thought David was going to go the same way, as a large wave came up behind him, and he was left running up the beach to safety, meaning only his socks got wet.

So he could watch the seabirds along with the rest of us - I saw my first puffins, and some gorgeous Icelandic gulls, but they were too far away to photograph.  You could see them clearly through binoculars though.

We didn't stay for long, or get to actually go in the cave, because the tide came in too fast, so we moved on to the central village of Vik.  This was where our troubles began.
We were put out of the coach by two souveneir shops and I assumed we were going to have to wander around those for an hour until we moved on to our next stop.  Especially considering Mum had run out of Ribena - I thought we'd have to go in search of a drink for her.  So, considering my only boots are thick fur-lined moon boots, as mentioned before, I simply wore the broken canvas shoes I'd been having to wear all along.
Unfortunately, I was wrong about where we were going.  Mum realised there was another way down to the beach, and wanted to go for another look at the birds, despite the fact that the tide was coming in.  She was still wearing her lighter boots, having known her own plans, but I, wearing low shoes with huge holes in the side, could not be expected to go.  I told her to go alone, and I'd wait up on the path.  But, of course that was too dangerous - I "might get kidnapped" - so I had to struggle down the beach, and keep stopping to empty my shoes of sand before I could hobble on.  Meanwhile, David had gone off to look for a drink for Mum.
Suddenly, he re-appeared, holding a carton of an Icelandic brand of blackcurrant juice.  "She keeps stopping and complaining, because she didn't bring her boots." Mum stated, (even though I'd actually not complained a bit - I just had to keep stopping and emptying my shoes).  David looked down at my feet.  His face screwed up in its usual hatred.  "You stupid little b*tch!" he yelled at me, in front of everyone.  After all I'd been through, limping across that beach with Mum, I'm afraid to say my mood was not at its best, and I really wanted to get back at David.  "Shut up." I snapped.  "I didn't even know were coming down to the beach again.  If you don't stop insulting me, I'm going to throw something at you."  But David continued, "Of cawse ya knew we were comin' down to the bay-ch!  The woman told ya enough toims!"  I'm still not sure which woman he was talking about (either the tour guide or my mum), but I was not going to stand there being insulted any more.  So I did something really stupid - took the expensive binoculars which David had bought for me before the trip from around my neck, and lobbed them at him.   They bounced off of his belly, and hit the sand with a nasty thud"I warned you." I shrugged, knowing the reaction I was going to get from both of them.  "You ungrateful cow - just throwing expensive presents around like that!" Mum yelled at me.  I reminded her how rude David had just been to me.  "I'd rather have kindness and support over what I wanted to do with my life than possessions." I said, angrily.  "Oh, shut up about this mystery thing you wanted to do with your life.  You have no ambitions really - we all know that!  Otherwise, you'd stop speaking in riddles.  All you are is a spoilt little b*tch, who's been given everything you ever wanted - Beanies, ponies, rides..." "You do know what I wanted to do, all my hopes and dreams are in my blog.  It's just not something you'd WANT me to do, so you ignore it.  Maybe you're scared I would have had the talent.  I don't know..."  All right, I was getting really mad and saying stupid things by then, but you get the gist of it.  Basically, the argument raged about how she was sticking up for David who had been rude to me, rather than for me, who had just been insulted by him - again.
Then came the final straw - "I'm not sticking up for David, I'm sticking up for those binoculars.  They did nothing wrong, and I feel sorry for them!"
I'm not quite sure when the binoculars became people, but apparently they were more important than I was at that moment in time.  This was an argument between myself and David.  I know I did wrong throwing such a lot of money around, but I am sick of Mum putting me down all the time, when David causes the trouble in the first place.
Pushed into a corner again, I slapped her arm (another wrong, I know ), and picked the binoculars up - they were unharmed, by the way - while she moaned about how badly I'd hurt her, which is simply impossible, because I hadn't slapped her hard - it was just an annoyance thing.  I wasn't even particularly near to her at the time.
After that we did walk around the gift shops, but Mum said she couldn't buy anything like postcards for anybody with me being such a little b*tch.  Of course, I wasn't allowed to sit outside, and had to stay with the ranting parents - can't ever risk getting kidnapped, can we now?!
"You're not sitting with me on the coach."  My mum 'threatened'.  Oh wow, really?  I actually get to sit seperately.  But what if Wifey or one of the Suicide Bombers kidnapped me?!   Funny as it may sound, Mum must have actually thought this, and once again sat next to me on the coach.
Next stop: Skogar Folk Museum!  It was a very interesting museum on on Icelandic history.  We had a guided tour, included with the coach trip, and they showed us all kinds of interesting things, the one that particularly sticks out being the large mouse trap they were using up until the 60s.  It was made from wood and bricks, and made such a loud noise that I think it would have sent any other mice in the surrounding area running a mile!
The main attraction of the museum was (*Drumroll please*) the ring from that treasure chest that is supposedly still behind Skogafoss waterfall.  As soon as Mum saw this ring, she completely shut up, and refused to talk to David as well as me.
Wifey had noticed by this point that we were all in a fowl mood, and wasn't talking to us (the fact she'd seen me talking to myself angrily in Vik might have helped towards that!), so I stood as near to Anna and the Suicide Bombers as possible, as they were the only ones in the group who were still being friendly towards me.
Outside the museum, they had mock-up Icelandic houses, showing you how they had changed throughout the ages.  We have so many of those kinds of things in this country, but David and I still wandered around to pass some time, while Mum stood outside and sulked for whatever her latest reason was.
She had a moan that we had "wasted too much time around the place" so she hadn't got in the gift shop to buy postcards or anything for Emma's family, although we had enough time to see that there was nothing different there anyways.
Finally, to Selijalandsfoss, another waterfall.  This one is special in the sense that you can walk behind it though...  I don't know if you can really see the people walking behind the waterfall in this picture, but it should at least illustrate it better than my muddled words.

The problem was getting up to the ledge behind the waterfall; You had to climb a very slippery trail (as photographed from the top).

Of course, there was a lot of spray from the waterfall coming up into your face too - by the time my parents had argued and ranted at each other all the way from the coach to the wet stone steps and muddy slope, the guide and the rest of the group had long reached the top and were not there for support.  Instead, people were behind us, pushing us on.
Halfway up, Mum started screaming! "I can't go any further.  This bl**dy coat you got me is no good - it's not even waterproof.  And I can't BREATHE in this spray!  I'm going back."  "Don't be ridiculous." David said, and he and I tried to get her up past the spray, which would have only been a couple more steps.  But she refused, and shook us off.  "Get off of me!" she yelled at me, while everyone behind us started puffing and blowing about us stopping them getting up the steps.  "We're in everyone's way!" And I moved to the side to let people pass.  "YOU'RE ALWAYS IN THE WAY!" Mum yelled at me.  I ignored her and, unable to get back down past the big build-up of tourists, continued up to the top, thinking Mum would have no choice but to follow.
Reaching the top, and turning around though, I found just David, and saw a woman in a pink coat (aka Mum) storming across a field towards the coach.  How she got back down I'll never know, but what is for certain is that she wasn't walking behind Seljalandsfoss.  Having reached the top, there was no way to get back down that side, so David and I continued to the other side to walk back down, me taking a photo on the way, thinking Mum would at least have a picture.

Of course, as you probably figured out by now, that was not the case, and I guess I was stupid to think it would be.
Having staggered down the other side, I saw Mum looking like a thunderclap sitting on a nearby bench.  The mother Suicide Bomber smiled at me, knowing that some kind of trouble was going on between us all, which was highly embarassing in itself.
I can't actually remember how the conversation with Mum went, but basically I had only gone up behind the waterfall because I was "proving a point" (not sure what about), I "knew how much she'd wanted to go up there" (I hadn't heard her mention it before - only the geysirs and volcano) and "was cruel, knowing she couldn't get up there" (I thought she would follow, as I already said).  I'm "definitely not one of her family, and take after David" (She said that, because she knows how much I hate him)  Do you think her dad would have done that?  Actually, even dear darling David wouldn't have done that - he would have gone back down with her, had she not sent him up after me to protect me.   (He would have gone, he just intended on taking her down to the bottom of the trail first).  She wants to go on holiday with Emma and Nick, because they wouldn't do anything without her by their side.  I asked her why she was so upset - I thought "all waterfalls looked the same as each other and were utter cr*p".  Ah, but THIS was the one the treasure chest had been behind.  Earlier she had been upset that David had walked behind that other waterfall (Skogafoss, where she thought he had fallen in), and that's why she had sulked at the museum when she had seen the handle from the treasure chest.  Now she realised I was the despicable one who was prepared to do that without her.  I pointed out to her that Skogafoss was the one where the treasure was supposedly hidden, and that was why nobody had ever recovered it - because you COULDN'T walk behind that one - but she ignored me.  "I want to smash your f***ing camera, after what you did to the binoculars, (Um, I didn't do anything to the binoculars, as it had turned out) but I have more decency than that." Suddenly, she stood up, walked up to me and whacked me around the face, in front of everyone on the coach tour, just to humiliate me.  "Ha!  Now you know how it feels!" She cried, triumphantly.  Um...I object.  I've never hit her round the face, and never hit her with such force.  But, oh well, never mind.  By this point she had a thing that I was smiling at the teenage boy in the group (er, I always return a smile, and I don't think he was smiling in *that* sense, and I certainly wasn't...even if he was pretty cute!  My life does NOT revolve around the male population as you know!)
Back on the coach, I made my way to the seat behind David, tears stinging in  my eyes, as Mum yelled over the seats "I'm not moving now - that's the one thing I can do to hurt you for what you've done!"   God, I've heard that one so many times it doesn't even bother me any more.  Still, I yelled back, just to embarrass her, "Well, you can stop sleeping in the same bed as me then, can't you?  And here's hoping the drunks come in to the house in Perivale and kill you sleeping on the floor in the lounge."  Yes, we were playing petty school kids as usual.
I didn't have my shoes - they were at Mum's feet, so I had to keep my boots on, or sit in my socks.  I chose the latter option.  I was sitting opposite Mother and Son Suicide Bomber, so I tried to keep myself calm, but it didn't work.  I broke down in tears, and later found out I had a bleeding chin from where Mum had hit me.  So, of course, Michelle kept smiling at me in that annoyingly embarrassing way, while still swapping around that bloomin' baseball cap, and then hugging her son, in their weird lovey dovey way, while bragging about their holidays, past and present.  "Oh, this is just like Denmark, isn't it, Mike?  I do wonder what (Forgotten where she said - perhaps Austria?) will be like, don't you, Rob?"  Eventually, Mike and Rob fell asleep, Mike with his head on his mother's shoulder...  That family were just too close really.  We had to go the long way back as there were awful traffic jams all along the usual route.
We were almost back at the guesthouse when a car came racing out of a petrol station and almost crashed into the coach right by my seat.  Almost, but not quite.  Still, there was an awful commotion with both vehicles honking their horns at each other.  "That woke us all up, didn't it?" Michelle said to her son, in that weird way she had.
She then smiled at me again.  She was spooking me a little now...
Fortunately, we were back at the guesthouse.  Yes, they were dropping us off first.  That's how awfully embarrassing this whole situation had become. Mum refused to pick up my shoes, of course.  She had more pride than that, and then the whining started again, with her telling me again and again how I "didn't give a damn about her - after all, I'd said that myself!"  Um, when, may I ask, did I say that?  The argument continued long after we got back to the guesthouse, and with me having to sleep in the same room as her, it was even worse for me.  David just shut his door and forgot the whole situation, but I just had to listen to her the whole time.  I ended up sleeping with my bag on the bed by my side, so that she couldn't smash my camera or Pinkie Pie, should she get angry in the night.
She said that she had "washed her hands of Iceland now, and wasn't going to do anything else until Tuesday, when she would stay on the coach until we got to the airport".
But would she carry out her threat?  Find out in the final episode of "The Icelandic Adventure"!!!

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