I´ve always told myself, that to visit a country once is enough, because the world is so big and we only have one life. But then I spent 2 months working and travelling in Iceland. And I came back again another summer and probably will come again and again…here´s why:
The Nature & People
We all know, what a beautiful nature they have in Iceland. Literally WonderFull landscapes, non-touched by human race, where you can feel peace and enjoy the art of Mother Nature. But I would like to tell you about Icelanders – people making the atmosphere even more natural and free.
Memories of Iceland
Once a year, in a dark summer night, you can see Reykjavík lake Tjornin full of candle lights and hundreds of people standing by and watching the scene in silence. By this tradition, people remember victims of atomic bombs downed to Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. That´s the moment, when you realize that we all are citizens of the Earth, together – not divided into states or race or religion, when you can feel a power of life and a human fellowship. You need to stop there, even for a while and join emotional moment, appreciate those souls, which have unreasonably lost they life. And this is what was happening thousands kilometers far away from Japan.
Are you a runner or not? Doesn´t matter! Supporting atmosphere is everywhere. As a viewer at the main streets you can join encouraging crowds of people, as a runner even at the most normally quiet streets you can gather forces from singing families making music for you with pots, cutlery or plates, simply anything they can find at home. You can hear people standing at their windows shouting and applauding or friends groups singing and playing the instruments, everything just to make you run faster, better and with smile on your face ( even you are absolutely not catching your breath). From the beginning till the end of the race you feel like the most famous runner, even there are thousands of participants. Doesn´t matter, where you are from or what age you are or whatever, they care about you.
So what? Are you going to join? http://www.marathon.is/reykjavik-marathon
Colors every step you take! Reykjavík is getting ready for Pride all summer long. You can see rainbow street, rainbow flags in every shop or restaurant, at cars, even at police motorbikes, rainbow cakes in bakeries, rainbow hair of people walking by, everywhere. And what can you feel? Love support. No differences. Only joy from the day full of colors and happy people. I find this sentence ( which I´ve seen on the window of one café bar) the most representative for Iceland: ” If you are a racist, sexist, homophobic or an asshole….don´t come in.”
If you are interested in rainbow : http://www.rainbowreykjavik.com/#!lgbt-iceland-/c1gu6
It was a common ride from Akureyri to Reykjavik, when we met this person – the bus driver. This man loves his country, enjoys his job and customers. Along the way, we had many stops at gas stations. He always gave us an advice, where they have the best ice cream ( he had one, as well, with us), he always waited for us with smile and words ” no rush, no stress, we have time”, he walked from bus back to the cafe for our take away coffee lids, so we could drink it on our way, too. And what he melted our hearts more with, was the last stop. We were waiting already in bus for him when he came back with hands full of surprises. He bought for each one of us a traditional icelandic sweets and had a speech about its history. I think he didn´t even know, how much we appreciated this gesture and that it will always stay with us. The good in people is priceless.
We were working in Reykjavík and as a colleague we had the icelandic guy, we do not even know his name or age, if he is married or not, has children or not. But we know stories from his life. He does what he likes. All his life. He ended up with a job, which he was doing for 15 years and he started with absolutely different one, not so well-paid, just because he likes it. Without previous education, just with his big heart. At our last day, instead of saying goodbye, he said “ Do something interesting!” And he was right, because he is the perfect example, that it is possible.
Did you know, that they don´t have any chocolate yogurt in Iceland?! When we ask this very important and serious question: “Why?” our couch host, he did not answer at all. He just walked in to the kitchen and came back with white yogurt full of cocoa, which he mixed for us. “Here you are.” he said, but he still did not understand the taste like this. Maybe because Icelanders have a lot of nice sweets and more – are you asking what? Another reason to plan the trip and find out!
On our day-off from work, we were walking by our neighborhood and we heard a music. When we came closer, we saw many people chatting, eating, drinking and a band from local musical school playing popular songs. There was a sign on a lamp:” waffles, hotdogs, coffee free, please, come in.” (voluntary financial donation was welcome to buy more food and drinks for others). So, we came in to the garden and enjoyed traditional icelandic hot-dog, caramel warm waffles, coffee and sitting on a grass with listening to nice music with people, we didn´t even know. Just because…
So, this is what kind of people and feelings you can experience in Iceland. If you wonder about travelling there, please, do not hesitate and enjoy your time in country, which can give you a strong feeling of “heima” – which means home. And by the way. If you would like to stay forever, after your trip, don´t worry, it´s absolutely normal!
PS: Thank you for reading, take care, please and say hello to Iceland for me.