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8 Good Reasons to Visit Iceland in Mid- to Late May

If you’re considering a road trip around Iceland, please take me with you I’m going to try to convince you into doing it in mid- to late May instead of any other time. Why? Because I think we picked the perfect time to go! We had such a great time seeing the country at this particular time of year and I’d like you to experience the same. :-)

Before we continue, I should probably let you know the kind of travellers we are. We are budget travellers for sure but we are not the backpacking or even the camping type. Our backs prefer not to carry anything heavy for prolonged amount of time and we like to lay our backs on a soft, warm bed at the end of the day. We’re getting old! We also enjoy a good amount of privacy during our travels. That said, on with the list!

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4-Tea-C: My Own Tea-based B&W Film Developer Recipe

I’ve seen a rising interest on my tea developer post lately and realized that I never did post my recipe here. It has been a while since I actually developed a roll of film with it but this recipe worked when I did use it. Your mileage may vary.

Ingredients (to make 500ml):

  • 2 tea bags of each Red Rose orange pekoe, Tetley’s pure green tea, Tetley’s pure peppermint tea, and Tetley’s pomegranate green tea (8 tea bags in total)
  • 2 teaspoons of washing soda (I used ARM & HAMMER® Super Washing Soda Detergent Booster)
  • 1000mg vitamin C (I used “King of Spice” brand Ascorbic Acid from Bulk Barn)
  • water

Mixing:

  • Put 300ml of water in a saucepan, throw in all the tea bags, bring to boil.
  • Once boiling, turn off the stove and let steep for 30 minutes.
  • Transfer to a measuring cup to see how much tea solution you got. I got 200ml after squeezing every drop from the tea bags.
  • Mix the vitamin C with the tea mixture. (In retrospect, mixing it with the washing soda solution would probably be a better idea since mixing it with the tea mixture creates a lot of froth.)
  • Mix washing soda with water to create 300ml solution or adjust according to the amount of tea solution you got in order to have a total of 500ml.
  • Mix the tea-c and washing soda solutions together.
  • As for the temperature, I didn’t check but pretty sure it was room temperature, i.e. 20 degrees. (I know. Very scientific indeed. *sarcasm*)


Developing:

I read somewhere that developing with tea takes longer than with coffee but I wasn’t exactly sure how long I should do the development for, so I decided to do a semi-stand development for 2 hours, just to be safe.

Basically what I did was, I poured the developer into the tank with the film in it, did 10x inversion, put it on the kitchen counter and then went grocery shopping. Got home an hour later, did another 10x inversions, and then another one before I poured the developer out of the tank at the end of the two hours.

Wash, fix with your favourite fixer (don’t skip this!), wash, hang to dry!

Hope that makes sense! Would love to see the results if you decided to try it out.

Stormy weather in West Iceland.

Iceland Road Conditions and Weather Information

So you have a road trip around Iceland coming up but you’re not quite sure what the road conditions and the weather will be like (the weather part will also determine whether you need to pack your winter coat or not). The following websites are your friends and they will show you just what you need to know. We found them very useful during our visit.

Road Conditions

For road conditions, make sure you bookmark Vegagerdin (Icelandic Department of Transportation) website. This clickable road condition map is essential. Don’t hit the road before consulting it first. If that’s not enough and you need to know what road conditions are like in (almost) real-time, there are road web cams, ready for your perusal.

Weather

For weather forecast, Vedur (Icelandic Met Office) website is the one to bookmark. It has a clickable map of Iceland with a 6-day forecast. It even has a map with weather for areas around popular tourist attractions. Very handy! Tip: For something different, scroll down the page and play the sound file of an Icelandic person reading the weather forecast in English. Icelandic accent is adorable. :-)

Another website you might want to bookmark is Live from Iceland. It has live streaming webcams from various attractions in South Iceland, including Reykjavik. My husband loves watching the one of Geysir (I’d recommend waiting a bit until you see the one geyser called Strokkur erupt — it won’t be long). I love the Jökulsárlón one. Anyway, you can see what the weather’s like at those places in real time and even can arrange to have someone at home watch you have a blast through the webcams!

I hope someone will find this post useful. Have fun in Iceland!

Noah and the Whale – Love of An Orchestra

Just another one of my happy-making songs. In other news, I’m not really in the mood for blogging today. I think updating the blog three times a day has finally gotten old to me. Need to try something new. I’ll figure it out tomorrow.

Picks of the Web for May 13, 2014

Metric – Calculation Theme

I couldn’t decide which music video to post today because there are so many songs I love that I would like to share, it’s so hard to choose from, so I made this rule: when in doubt, post something by a Canadian artist. Metric it is then!

“Calculation Theme” is probably our most favourite song by Metric. It’s from their first full album, “Old World Underground, Where Are You Now?” (2003). There’s something haunting about this song, and not just because of the ghosts.

“Tonight, your ghost will ask my ghost, who put these bodies between us?”

Picks of the Web for May 12, 2014

Picks of the Web for May 9, 2014