when you're off to a visit
be clean though your clothes
Be not ashamed
of your shoes and socks
Still less of the horse you have."
On a cold but clear day we visited a beautiful horse farm in the north. The Icelandic Horse is so well loved in this country and it has become the favorite pet here ...many more horses than dogs and cats combined. In the rural areas, EVERYONE has one or more. After visiting the stables, we saw why. Though small in stature, they are big of heart. Very gentle, even the stallions. The ride, so I am told, is to a different cadance than a regular horse, and easy on the rider. We saw a demonstration where a rider held a FULL glass of beer at a full gallop and didn't spill a drop. The horse is very popular in Europe, and is exported, but once a horse leaves Iceland, it can never come back, to prevent many problems. The horse was riden by the Vikings and farmers alike, and they come is many many variations, so we saw every color and combination. Some people took a midnight ride one evening at one of the lodges, and said it was wonderful.
The farm we visited was a breeding and boarding stables and kids from as young as 6 come and stay and learn how to ride and take care care of their horse. They also served us coffee and wonderful rhubarb cake.
Everywhere in Iceland, the Icelanders enjoy a sweet and coffee in the afternoon.