★ Grimsvötn.

I’ve always found volcanos to be intriguing phenomenon’s. Volcanos and earthquakes feel like nature’s way to letting us know that our planet is a living and breathing thing.

Meet Grimsvötn, from Iceland.

Last week, he (I presume) started spewing hot ash, causing flights above northern Europe to be canceled on Monday. And, if you’ve followed my blog (or me on Twitter), you’ll know that Pieter and I are leaving for Stockholm this week to run the marathon on Saturday. When I first heard about the new eruption last weekend, I laughed it away, thinking it could never bother us. But yesterday (Tuesday), things got a bit more serious. Flights from and to Scandinavia were being canceled and things were not really looking good.

I/We started searching for alternatives: going by car, by train, other flights with other carriers for another airports. So I had a call with Pieter yesterday and we agreed that all we could do was wait until our flight actually got canceled. Only then could we go for a possible plan b.

Wednesday morning, off to work until noon. I installed “Flight Track Pro” on my iPad and added very possible flight from Brussels to any of the 3 Stockholm airports to the app. Next to that, I had the SN Brussels Airlines status page and the Brussels Airport departure schedule open in my second screen. While working, I periodically checked today’s flights and saw no real problems (the 8h55 flight was delay to 10h20 but that was all).

I had agreed with Pieter that we would check in online as soon as possible, regardless of our flight’s status (or news about the same). I checked us is and printed and emailed the boarding passed. (SN also provides the option to send a boarding pass to your phone via text message. That message has a link to a page with a QR-code, I’m going to give that a try tomorrow, would be neat if it works.)

Then, at about 11h30, word come across the wire (the wire being the internet and twitter) that the eruption had stopped and that flight operations were expected (expected, so nothing’s sure yet) to return to normal by Thursday morning.

So now all we can do is wait and hope that out flights goes through. Fingers crossed.