August 17th, 2016

A few nights in Reykjavik !
Arriving in Iceland after an overnight flight on Iceland air, (which is my new favorite international airline) I was a little out of it and weighed down with all my stuff and duty free goods. I found my hostel pretty easily though, and collapsed on a couch to drink a cheap bottomless cup of coffee. After awhile I checked in and met a few other solo travelers in my room. They invited me out, but after a shower, and face timing the fam – while they had cake for gram’s bday – I went to find them but was too late I think, so I explored the city a bit on my own. I hung out with them later at the hostel and after my jet lag kicked in I went to have tea at 2am and ended up chatting with Dan, the desk clerk from Czech Republic. It was good though because he gave me a bunch of tips on the ring road as he just did it the week before!
The next day, after the anxiety of my arrival, I sat down to write up my thoughts and I wandered around the city and read. I knew I had to be productive to feel more okay with this recent endeavor. Reading and writing are productive!

My third day in this adorable city, (it has the spirit of a big city but the manageability of a small home town), I hung out with Jules and Gayle. Lovely solo female travelers from Germany and Australia. We had great convos about traveling and boys and being a little lost in life. It was really fun to meet these girls on such similar paths and we all marveled at that. Gayle had been traveling for the past 5 months and was headed to Canada to work for awhile. Jules travels a lot and loves meeting people and hosting them in Berlin. She invited me out there and her friend has already offered to play some music with me when I’m there!

I saw some cool sites with Gayle before she met up with her Icelandic friends and I wandered on my own; got some postcards and read and drank some wine discreetly from my thermos in the common area of the hostel. It was Friday night and Dan asked me when I was going out because it was a good party night, but after some face time with my bff, I decided to stay around the hostel. I chatted with a Korean who had been working in Canada for the past year, and met a girl from Montreal who had also just done the ring road. I asked Dan to turn in the Olympics and it was fun to watch the opening ceremonies with an international crew. Dan offered me and Sabrina some “tea” (beer) which was nice of him since it was after hours and we felt sneaky. It was a nice evening and I went to bed after some Australians came back from the bars drunk and obnoxious.

In the morning I checked out and waited for Dave to pick me up from the hostel. I know I could’ve figured out how to see Iceland by myself but I’m such a lucky girl to have Dave in my life and to accompany me on this trip. Without him I would not have been able to do the trip like this! We checked into the hotel and planned the first few days of our road trip. Then we went downtown with the crowd where everyone had gathered for the pride parade! It was advertised as a family event so there were a lot of children and families, but we found some beer and wandered around and watched the lovely little parade. An Alaskan couple, wearing Alaskan flags as capes, had come to Reykjavik just for pride! And Iceland’s president was in the parade too! Dave wanted to check out the American bar so we wandered there and around passed the lebowski bar and had some snacks at the chuck Norris bar. We found Armand there, a local who had grown up on a very small island. He was pretty entertaining and kept dropping his beers out of his backpack as he was leaving us.😂

We went back to the hotel to nap and I woke up a few hours later to meet up again with Jules for a smoke. It was about midnight when I went to meet her and the nightlife was just getting started. Walking through downtown on my way to her, it was fun to see the place come to life within the hour. I chatted with her about boys and life for awhile and then started wondering if Dave was up and wanted to go out, so I found wifi at the lebowski bar and waited for a bit, chatting a bit with the locals. Everyone spoke to me in Icelandic because of my blonde hair and blue eyes. In line there were girls with pink hair and piercings and guys in nice suits. I sat and smoked and a guy, August, thanked me (in Icelandic) for not sitting on his beer. We spoke about American and Icelandic politics. The whole world is paying attention right now !

I wandered back to the hotel around 2am and Dave was just coming down in the elevator! But we just went to sleep since we started our trip the next day. Dave got excited when he thought the sun was rising but I let him know that actually it doesn’t go down completely! No wonder the locals stay out till 5am!