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I love the ritual

from Thursday, March4th of the year2010.

I love the ritual of arriving in Iceland. For some confusing reasons, you have to go through security again upon landing; this slows down the whole process and, weirdly, relaxes some of the typical anxiety about rushing off the plane and through the duty free. I have the habit of walking just past the arrivals hall, into the transfers area, to buy an orange juice to make sure my Icelandic card still works (this time, no: my old bank, Kaupþing, has turned into something called Arion with a distressingly Navajo logo; apparently, I have to go “in” and speak with my service lady). While one awaits one’s bags, the halogen glow of the duty free beckons; also one’s cellphone starts buzzing with requests for Red Lucky Strikes and Whiskey. All of this achieved, hop into the car, turn left then right then left then right then around the corner into the dark, slow, anglerfish-observed curve of the road into Reykjavík. I’m in bed now, preparing for a nap, with the windows open, the fan on, and the promise of a long day.


  • Does every Icelandic bank now list the exchange rate between the krona and the International Monetary Fund Special Drawing Rights on its homepage, as Arion does? Its presence there seems somehow menacing.

  • Cannot wait to read your tales of derring-do. <3

  • you are lucky that your friends only ask for duty free! Every time I go to Iceland my bag is laden with purchases for my viking friends. On my last trip it was a 4lb bag of corn flour, a tortilla press and a huge jug of tapitio. This time it’s various over the counter cold meds, peanut butter m&ms, guitar pedals, and a tristeza tshirt.

  • Bless your heart,good travels.

  • What happened to that awesome video of Jonsi and you that you tweeted today? It’s password protected now and I would really like to watch it again. I would even be willing to pay for a DVD copy if there’s a longer video of the set.