Distracted By Something Shiny

...scribblings of random musings...

Friday, July 07, 2006

Iceland

So I'm in Iceland right now. It's close to 2 pm, and I've been strolling the small streets of Reykjavik for a couple hours. Just returned to the place I'm staying (Guesthouse AdaM) for a little bit because my cell phone (and, for all intents and purposes on this trip, my camera) died so I needed to charge it. Luckily this little guesthouse that I'm staying at has a computer with free internet access for its guests. So here I am. Hi.

I got off the plane yesterday (Icelandair is not the most glamorous airline and prompted me to buy a portable DVD player for the trip -- an investment I am very pleased with so far) and kept thinking "what the hell am I doing in Iceland?!" But I got to my guesthouse and was pleasantly surprised -- basically because I learned I wouldn't be sharing a bathroom but that I had one in my room (it's all about the little things in life). Also in the room is a mini fridge (as well as a TV, microwave, hot water heater, etc), so I got some beverages at the market right downstairs because Iceland is crazy expensive. After napping I decided to venture out to a local bar. I had a beer, but admittedly was half expecting folks to take me under their wing ("you're from California? come sit with us!" etc) but that didn't happen. So I was feeling kinda lonely and bored, but still felt good about going out instead of staying in my room all night.

The weather today is great. It's crisp but the skies are clear. Quite comforable in the sun (though not t-shirt weather) but really chilly in the shade. Reykjavik is small and almost quaint. Lots of little shops and one way streets... It reminds me of Durham (England) a little bit. But of course that's probably just because Durham was the only other foreign smallish town I've visited.

A few things you should know about Reykjavik:

- THE SHOWER WATER SMELLS LIKE ROTTEN EGGS.
All I can say is thank god I just recently read David Rakoff's Fraud, in which he has an essay about being in Iceland and comments/complains about the sulfur smell of the water, so I at least knew what it was. Of course I quickly learned to shower without breathing through my nose.

- IT DOESN'T GET DARK. EVER.
Well, at least not at this time of the year. It's so weird to have jet lag, no concept of time, and to have it still be light out at midnight. Granted, the sun isn't blazing, it's about a pre-dawn brightness. But still, very odd. And very cool.

- THE PHONE BOOK LISTS PEOPLE BY THEIR FIRST NAME.
Basically because in Iceland, people have their given names, and then their last name is just based on parent's name, with the suffix of -dottir for girls and -son or -sen for boys. So Sven's son Bjorn would simply be Bjorn Svenson.

Okay, I think my phone/camera should be all charged now, so I'm off. More later!

3 Comments:

  • At 8:31 AM, Blogger Olliebur said…

    Wow Demps-= You're on quite the tour... hope you having a blast!

     
  • At 11:29 AM, Blogger Eugene R said…

    Well, with only 270,000 people in the whole country, your phonebook should be a size of a small brochure :)

     
  • At 7:08 PM, Blogger bee said…

    Wow, sounds like good fun!
    What brought you to Iceland?

     

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