One doesn’t really hear things that go bump in the night in Iceland in the summer. Maybe it’s because there is really no “night” here. You know, kinda like that whole tree falling in the forest bit? So when I heard a strange gurgling sound in the wee hours of the morning on our last day at Skalanes, I was a little worried, but I drifted quickly back to sleep when no one else in the room became restless.
In the morning, we all woke to rain and wind. I wandered down to the main gathering area for coffee and breakfast and realized that something had definitely gone bump in the night…the sewer system…again. Thank goodness we are a group of Earlhamites. We live with an adventuresome spirit, a positive state of non-expectancy, assume positive intent, and apparently we do plumbing, which in this case was a true example of servant leadership. (Thank you, Charlie, Nic, Kellan and Faith!)
While not an ideal way to begin the day, there was much to do to prepare for our very early shuttle tomorrow to Egilsstadur for the flight back to Reykjavik. Arlo, Mads and Lilly trekked to our Skalanes campsite to retrieve the tents, deerskins and sleeping bags. They reported the ground was completely saturated and the rivers were rushing. Meanwhile, each science group carefully repacked gear that will return to Earlham with us and this is also our signal that it is time to begin to curate the data we’ve collected thus far. We will be working on this during our time in Reykjavik.
As the logistics of the day concluded, we took the time to enjoy our last night at this special place. On this last night at Skalanes, several took a walk to the cliffs to see the puffins while others tried to redeem themselves in final matches of Catan and Uchre. It’s off to bed for all, as tomorrow is an early day of travel. Skalanes has truly become a home away from home for many of us. This place is an incredible retreat each year for learning with and from each other (and often times with others from institutions around the world – nice to see our friends from Glasgow again!), analyzing and curating data and one of the most beautiful spaces contemplation and reflection. Until next time, Skalanes.