If there's one thing I love more than all the cakes, chocolate and confectionary in the world then it's riding on the back of a horse. Surely there is no feeling more exhilarating and liberating than galloping over hills and plains, your hair and the horses main flapping wildly together in the wind!
It was a no brainer, therefore, when I saw that horse-riding was one of the excursions on offer. It was actually part of a package deal - riding in the morning, Blue Lagoon in the afternoon. Perfect! I thought to myself. I'll ride fast and hard and then let the hot, steamy waters of the lagoon soothe my aching muscles.
Stacy Doll, not overly enamoured with these long haired beasts, opted for a morning of whale watching instead. We would meet up later in the afternoon at the Blue Lagoon. (Which is the exciting subject of tomorrow's blog post!)
Once again we booked our trip through Reykjavik Excursions since we'd been mightily impressed with their service the day before when we went HERE. Total cost for the tour was 13900 krona (£70) which DID NOT include admission to the Blue Lagoon. I find it very ironic that one of the UK's cheapest supermarkets bears the same name as what is possibly one of the world's most expensive countries!
After a 9am pick up at the hotel and approximately half an hour in the mini van we arrived at Laxnes Horse Farm. I was quick to spot a kindred spirit. Although I must say, I was very jealous of her long and luscious lashes:
Me and my ginger friend were not destined to be together, however, for I was allocated this dark little beauty who goes by the name of gjöf meaning gift.
Notice how my little gift appears to be smiling in the photo above. Now have a look at her expression in the photo below. She was happy until me and my double D's crippled her back. She was probably holding out for the skinny, blonde Norwegian girl standing behind me. NEEEEEEIGH LUCK, my four-legged friend. Now ride, ride like the wind!
And ride like the wind she did! That horse was one furry bundle of atomic energy! Now I'm pretty strong, I lift weights most days, but I'll be darned if it didn't take all of my Ginger Warrior strength to keep her from bolting out into yonder snow-capped hills! She was a live wire alright but I wouldn't have wanted her any other way.
Two free spirits unleashed and in need of speed!
The other members of the group consisted of a group of young Norwegian nurses, a dentist from Denmark with his niece and nephew and a mother and her three sons from Sweden. It was her 60th birthday and they had surprised her with a trip to Iceland which goes to show that she has raised three very lovely and thoughtful boys.
I really wish I had taken more photographs of the stunning panoramas but as you can imagine, I was too busy trying to keep my trusty steed from running riot! At times it really was a battle of wills - GW v stubborn Icelandic horse. I would dare to say that in the end I had the upper hand - but only just! And let's face it, if I had a metal contraption shoved in my gob I'd probably (and reluctantly) have to concede defeat.
If I had one slight complaint it would be this: for the second part of the ride (it lasted two hours in total) the group was split in half - beginners and those with more experience. I went with the latter group and was desperately hoping for one big almighty gallop through the Icelandic valleys. My heart, mind and soul were ready for the rush!
What ensued was 30 minutes of fast trotting and a pair of breasts which, if they could talk, would have been pleading for mercy! Cantering and galloping provide a much smoother and more pleasant rhythm so I'm not entirely sure why trotting was the order of the day! But this certainly did not cast a shadow upon an otherwise perfect morning amidst the beautiful and remote Icelandic landscapes.
As for this little lady, the two hours we spent together proved to be the highlight of my entire trip.
Gift by name, gift by nature.