Today, I head back to the island Vágur to find out what it knows. I’m driving with the tiny village of Gásadular in mind, but I’m interrupted almost as soon as I start. Rounding a hill, I find Sandavágur and its bright, red church. I’m quickly learning that most of these villages have made unfathomable churches their focal points. I’m finding them mostly pressed against shores lined with aged cemeteries and bright or monochromatic houses sprawling out around them. The church at Sandavágur is not different, so I pull over to properly mull it over.
It’s not long after I leave the village before I’m stopped once again. This time it’s a series of peaks poking up through the Atlantic that get me. I don’t know their names, so I remember them as Faroese sea stacks dotting the lip of a neighboring island before I continue my drive.
Gásadular isn’t far. To get there, I need to pass through a one-lane/two-way tunnel that’s been carved out of the edge of a mountain. (They really make you work for it.) When I reach the other side (unharmed, adrenaline pulsing), I find what just might be the tiniest village I’ve seen yet— buried in utter fog. I’m here mostly for one reason. I want to see the waterfall at Gásadular up close. There is a single parking lot in the village (or at least that’s how I interpret a nearby sign), so I park and make my way to what seems to be the early stages of an edged out trail. It winds around the village and hides behind the back of grassy hill in front of me. Map-less, I veer off and climb. I need a better view.
When I get to the top, I’m no closer to a waterfall— at least not one that I can see or hear. I do, however, find that I’ve barged in on a herd of grazing sheep and that the hills where I’m standing go on for more than just a few miles. I head toward the ocean. When I reach it, I’m hundreds of feet above its shore with gusts of wind and rain teasing my back. Adrenaline game: strong today.
I follow the cliff’s edge until I reach a tiny, dirt and gravel pathway. On a whim, I follow it past a sign that begs me not to and find stairs clinging to the cliff’s edge. Slowly, I take them down, holding onto a makeshift railing patiently waving with the wind. When I look out over their edge, I see it. A waterfall paired with a cove in a hazy mix of blue, white, brown, and green. I follow it with my eyes from the ocean’s surface to the cliff’s edge and beyond. I see tiny Gásadular houses casually resting above it in a misty fog. They read pretty nonchalant when I think about the grandeur beneath them. It’s here that I finally realize a single bench pointed right at the falls. It is the only indicator that their beauty has been acknowledged by this village, and my overly-stimulated-by-commercialized-American-landmark eyes understand that there’s something to this modesty. Drenched, cold, and invigorated, I immediately secede from the idea that a waterfall might not be worth all of the hassle.