By Katie Heffring

Dip a toe. The cold chill of the Arctic Ocean wakes me up. Up up up and up along the waterfall following the river into the moss covered highlands of illuminating greens. Sun heats my face, rain soaks my back and freezing wind creeps into my every bone.

And so the furry white sheep mocks me.

When the fog rolls in, I acquiesce to fate without hesitation and continue on.  On on on and on through the twilight night. The fog lifts. A full moon and I have been transported into another place.  Barren hills cut, rugged black and black red.  I stop to touch the ground – it is ash and warm.  Hot and hotter.  Red and redder. The moving mountains steam and hiss at the frosty fingers of the monstrous glaciers that grip them.  Everything is not as it seems.  Upside-down and around and endless.

The soles of my shoes burn and cool, then burn and cool again, but I am blister free hehe.


The ascent turns to descent, but I feel like somehow I am rather high. High high high and high on the narrow ridge of a mountain.  I look down. Oooooo dizzzzzzzy. One step left or one step right and down I would go deep into Niflheim.  Too easy.  So onward then, but…why? I sure would like to stay here where the land is more alive than many a being.

Inhaleeaaahhhhexhale –

“Ha!” Like a slap in the face, the weather replies in a piercing cackle, “Nei Nei Nei Nei! Nei Nei Nei Nei! Only a glimpse you shall receive, útlendingur. Gods be good, should you survive that. Þetta er Ísland! Og you are no moss campion, útlendingur.”

“Aye, I am no moss campion.” Maybe in another life, I think. So onward then…down to civilization…


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