I Was Blown Away

tracey.jpgTracey Hayse
Hometown: Lexington, Ky.
We spent the day in Heimaey of Vestmannaeyjar (the Westman Islands). Upon arrival we were whisked away to a fish processing factory where we all got to dress in plastic scrubs and see fish heads chopped off. Mmm… when’s lunch? We then continued the tour by going into the bowels of a fishing boat, where I got to be the nerdy radio kid chasing down conversations with my microphone and hopping gaps in narrow walkways with my kit swinging wildly at my hip.

fishprocesser.jpg

Our next stop would give us a chance to climb a volcano that only 35 years ago almost destroyed Heimaey. (Check out “Stopping the Lava,” by John McPhee.) We all rush out of the bus and start hightailing it up the lava rock, when here comes the first high-speed gust of wind. This wind would put the MacGregor wind tunnel to shame. It knocked us into one another and onto the ground. To avoid being blown away we would lie down, then as soon as the wind would die down, we would all take off running as far as we could before the next gust. By the time we made it up and back down, I had bits of lava rock in my nose and ears and throat.

The beauty and the wind of Heimaey blew me away. Literally.

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