When I realised that my art residency was a short drive from the infamous waterfall Dettifoss I was determined go there. However, the severity of the winter meant no one was going. In Iceland weather is king, if the weather says no, you don’t go. Piles of snow blocked the long drive to the foss and not even the giant four wheel drive trucks with what look like over inflated giant tyres could get there.
The following year I returned to Iceland in a more reasonable month. Even June saw a snow flurry on the rough road to the falls. I wondered if I was pushing the rental car too hard on the black rocky track as it wound its way to higher snow covered ground, but after some 26km of bumpy road I saw a plume of spray ahead.
Dettifoss was as I had hoped and more; breathtakingly powerful; bleak; mesmerizing. A stark contrast in the two sides, on the east where I was the rocks were barren of any vegetation, and dry, desert like, on the west, everything was wet, clouds of spray hung in the air like curtains of water, the rocks were covered in moss and grass grew in every crevice. The grey forbidding flow, relentlessly roaring and falling.
This New Year, I recalled the scene standing on the edge, as the years changed their numerals, time did not miss a beat, the flow of time over the abyss – constant, oblivious, infinite. I am but a temporary witness filled with resolution.