Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Birthday Northern Lights in Iceland

You can’t beat a bit of winter sun in the midst of the bleakness.   So why we decided on a week in Iceland over the Canary Islands I don’t know, but suffice to say it was the best decision my friend and I ever made.  Last week in Reykjavik, I was blessed with something better than sun – a display of the northern lights on my birthday!

We followed a local’s advice and walked a trail along the harbour towards a lighthouse.  As the sky got darker and the city lights fell behind us, there they were.  Aurora  Borealis – our magical mystic green dancing friends.

northern lights

I had a boyfriend from Iceland once, and I was lucky enough to visit there with him twice while we were dating. I was welcomed into every single home by his VERY extensive family, and was made to feel like part of the tribe.  In winter I got to sit around a giant table in the family’s log cabin, playing games and drinking shots while the snow made a blizzard that blocked the mountains outside.

I got to try homemade moonshine and sing as they played piano (everyone is musical in Iceland).  In summer I foraged for wild mushrooms in meadows that would make the Twilight cast weep with envy.  I was even offered a taste of sheep head stew and whale sushi at local festivals, while children sawed gaily into a freshly caught shark with sharpened tools – it’s a tradition, you just have to keep quiet OK?

As you can imagine, I was enchanted.  Marginally disturbed at times yes, but enchanted.

This time it was just my friend and I, who’d never been to Iceland before.  I promised to try and recreate at least some of what I experienced on past visits.  We got lucky.  The same family members welcomed me back… even though my ex is my ex.  They’re just wonderful like that; once you’re family, you’re family.

We were given tickets to Bjork by perfect strangers, live at the Harpa concert hall.  We drank tomato beer in the hydroponic greenhouses of Fridheimar.  We crept inside a lava tunnel, snorkelled along the Silfra ridge between two tectonic plates, got to bask in three different face masks in the Blue Lagoon, and were cooked a meal of reindeer and Icelandic salmon, and sweet mashed potato and more, all in a friend’s beautiful kitchen.  This memorable meal was all overlooked by the moose he shot with his son several years ago, which was nailed to the wall.

tomato beer
Tomato Beer

reykjavik snow
Reykjavik Snow

lava tube
Lava Tube

gullfloss falls
Gullfloss Falls

coldest ever been
Coldest I’ve ever been

blue lagoon
Blue Lagoon

His son wasn’t there this time.  He’s up in the national park hunting a native goose-like bird for Christmas, but it’s a tradition, you just have to keep quiet OK?

Ah Iceland, you are literally my new favourite place in the world.  I plan to set a book here very soon, my heart is calling for it.  Maybe I’ll leave the hunting part out…

Where have you been that’s left a lasting impression on you, enough to write a book about?

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Out and About

by Susan Carlisle

The gates have been opened and I’ve been released on the world. After months of staying at home I’m loving being out among the people. The one thing I’ve had hammered home in the last few months is that people need people. My going has picked up to being in the fast lane in the last few months.

First, I was off to Nashville, Tennessee to give a program about my father’s family with the last name Myhr. My great grandfather was from Norway. The picture is of some of my family in front of the ancestral house. It was great to see everyone.

My next stop was a week cruising around Iceland. The trip was amazing. Waterfalls were everywhere.

Not going to conferences for a writer is very difficult. They are where we learn new things about the industry and see people who understand us. Finally I had a chance to attended NINC in person in Tampa, Florida in late September. The cherry on top was getting to go to a Maroon 5 concert. The group put on a great show. Tampa was a very nice place to spend a week in the fall. Getting a tan while gaining knowledge is the best of both worlds. I came home eager to write my next book. A refreshing concept after the last few months I have had.

Three days after getting back from Florida I attend my local writers conference. I was renewed. It was wonderful to see friends and make new ones. Nancy Harkness and I bonded. Even though she beat me out for a Maggie Award. Her book was better than mine and I told her that. If you haven’t read one of Nancy’s books you should.

A week later I was off to the Georgia State Fair in Perry, Georgia. My sister-in-law and I spent time seeing a skiing show, a seal show and Gary Puckett and the Union Gap. If you don’t know Gary Puckett’s music, I encourage you to go out and find it. You’ll be glad you did.

My going isn’t over, thank goodness, but more about that later.

Have you been anywhere fun lately?

Oh, yeah. I have a new book out in January. I thought I’d share the cover.

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Adventures in Iceland

by Susan Carlisle

My husband and I have just gotten back from a cruise around Iceland. I will admit we had hoops to jump through because of COVID but those came after we had already booked the trip. The beauty and friendliness of the country wasn’t dampened by all the “stuff” we had to do. Each stop became my favorite. Then the next day it was the next stop.

Masked and ready to go.

My husband indulged my love of afternoon tea while on the ship.
Looking across the water at a glacier
Our room was right next to the Captain’s and steps away from the bridge.
Historical house made of sod. There is few trees in Iceland.
A major waterfall and they were everywhere. We saw at least 50 in one day.
Snow on the mountains all year long.
Anything that has to do with WWII must be visited by my husband. Iceland was no exception. This is an old army barracks.
This is where I want to stay on my next visit. This are little house of a B&B. The view is unbelievable.
We had fermented shark and dried fish with a 80 prof wine. I don’t recommend any of it but it was an experience. We also had lamb done in mushrooms. We thought it was good.
Riding a tender out to the ship from an island.

We had a great trip. One I would go on again. If you wish to hear more about Iceland check out my Facebook Live Talking Books, Tea and Everything in Between on Sunday, August 15. I do a Facebook Live every Sunday at 2pm eastern. I’d love to have you join me.

Have you taken a trip recently? Even for the day?