A Crazy Trip to Iceland

We missed our connecting flight to Keflavik in Munich

  • May 20, 2020

I’ve experienced getting penniless in Sagada, didn’t have enough money to buy a bus ticket for my trip back to Manila.

I’ve also experienced getting stranded in Phnom Penh during the New Year.

I’ve experienced claiming a money remittance in Luang Prabang with my friend because she didn’t bring USD, and I had to cover for her during our whole Indochina trip.

I guess all those experiences just prepared me for a crazy trip to Iceland – physically, mentally, and financially.

We missed our connecting flight to Keflavik in Munich. We didn’t have enough time and we got lost. We didn’t even have to go through scrutiny when we entered “Schengen” because the Immigration Officer felt bad for us.

We couldn’t afford to get on the next flight out because, so we ended up purchasing a flight to Keflavik with an overnight connecting flight in Copenhagen. My friend had to go with a security officer to search for our luggage 8 hours in Munich, and my first time in Germany – we couldn’t even enjoy a glass of beer because we were too stressed!

Hope went up when we finally boarded and arrived in Copenhagen, found vacant airport benches and we finally called it a night.

My mom is always worried about me but I only told her about my missed flight when we were finally on the boarding gate to KEF.

Finally arrived in Iceland, and we were faced with a new problem – our tour bus (2-day south coast tour) had already departed. Either we chase it, or completely miss it. We couldn’t afford to miss it but public transport is all too confusing. We both can’t drive, so a self-drive was never an option. We gathered our bags, pooled our money, and talked to taxi drivers. If they could take us to Reynisfjara with the money that we have. The first guy told us it was impossible as they always use the meter, and we even thought that he was raising his voice on us. He left, crushing our hopes but! He came back with another driver and said that the other guy agreed to take us to our destination with our little money (the amount is still not small, but comparing it to the actual taxi fare – it was a huge difference).

He didn’t speak much English, so our ride to Reynisfjara was a quiet one, but he made sure to put on some good music. My tears started to swell when I noticed that he stopped the meter when the meter & price have already reached our agreed price. We took a wrong turn, it was a beautiful place but it wasn’t our destination. We were on the opposite side.

A few minutes more, we’ve finally arrived at the beach and met our tour coordinator. Our driver got our luggage out, we gave our payment and expressed our sincerest apologies and gratitude. He just laughed it off, he apologized for getting lost, and he even jokingly said that he hopes we enjoyed our private tour!

We bid our goodbyes.

We joined our group, explored more of Iceland. And as if our missed chances were not enough, Ms. Aurora Borealis decides to show up that night – probably wanting to congratulate us for making it to the beautiful country – but, we were dead tired and we passed out even before dinner.

It was a crazy experience but it’s also one of my most treasured memories.

I’ve learned that no matter how much you prepare in advance, there will be circumstances that could disrupt your flow any time but what’s important is that you shouldn’t let it stop you from making it to your destination. It’s just a stopover.

We met the kindest and the most generous people. A cold country with warmest citizens. And Filipinos who will treat every kababayan as family. Met lifetime friends from our tour group and we finally met Ms. Aurora during the country’s last week of northern lights tour operations.

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