Reykjavik: Sunshine, Ketill & Angel Investing

imagesThere are 3 more days until I get to pick up my darling hubby from Kevflavik airport and we can run away together across the island. I will continue to write if I find time, but I’m assuming it will be a frenzied week of me dragging my poor sweet love all over the island so I can share with him all my favorite Icelandic things.

So much has been said, so many memories made… I’d never be able to put them all into words if I tried… so many new friends, new music and food I’ve been introduced to… My heart, soul and mind are spilling over with awe and gratitude – though there’s a tiny helping of sadness blended in because this adventure is coming to a close.  The time to be less verbose and let it all sink in is quickly approaching, me thinks.

June 3

The sun came out again today and so I walked slowly and aimlessly through the city, visiting the old neighborhoods and trying deliberately to get lost in them. You find the best things that way.


When the sun comes out, this city glows!


The photography shop next to Babalu’s


Found amongst some boring apartment buildings.


I can’t tell you how many conversations I’ve overheard at these parking meters. “I don’t understand how to do this! It can’t be that hard, are we just idiots??”


Outside of City Hall. This old fellah was stealing bits of bread from the duck, honey badger style.


Oldest tree in Reykjavik.


Accurate 3D map at City Hall. So cool to look at it and know what it really looks like in person as you round each corner or cross each bridge. ❤


City Hall.

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During my wandering I eventually wound up at City Hall and ran into my gentle friend I’d met at Mokka a few days ago. He quietly held up a hand in greeting and smiled so I went over to say hi. I asked if I could take his photo this time and he obliged. I asked his name. He explained to me that his name is Ketill and how it means ‘kettle’ in Icelandic. He talked about how the pagans used to use a kettle to collect horse blood and drink it for ceremonial purposes. He asked me again what the name of the indian heritage I had a trace of in my blood was and I pulled out one of my cards and wrote “Comanche indian” above my name for him. He seems fascinated by ancestry and knows so much about European history and his heritage.  I’m determined to see if I can learn more about my family tree when I get home. It’s something I’ve never put much thought into and now realize is a pretty amazing thing to know.


I bid Ketill goodbye and he told me “good luck,” so I returned with “goda ferd, right?,” which I was told means good luck, but I think actually means have a good trip. He smiled warmly and bowed his head at me.

I walked over to the Stofan coffeehouse located in a beautiful old house near the city square and wrote for a few hours. Sigrun FB messaged me and said she and Freddie wanted to go to Harpa for happy-hour cocktails at 5:00. That sounded so fun! I headed back to the house and showered. I cleaned up my car a bit and wrote until she arrived.

When Sigrun got home she said Freddie couldn’t make it now so she and I went alone. We walked to Harpa and chatted excitedly about all the fun things she had planned for this summer and in the near future. She wants to go to India and learn how to teach yoga; and then to start a food cart; and to paint… she has so many ideas! She talked about how she knows of a group of people that are basically pizza gypsies. They travel around and go to small towns all over the EU, usually in sync with local festivals, and they make and sell this amazingly good pizza and then they disappear. There’s no way to get a hold of them or know where they’ll be next.

The bar was on the top floor of Harpa, overlooking the harbor and city through those amazing honeycomb windows (the reoccurring elements of this trip have been luck and bees. Maybe I picked the wrong bug to use on my Lucky Brake logo?) I ordered a Chili Rhubarb Mojito – yes, it was even better than it sounds – and Sigrun ordered a lemongrass daiquiri.

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As we drank our delicious treats we had a long and exhilarating talk about all the possibilities of what we can do in life, and how she’s currently stuck in the place I was in a couple years ago where I just didn’t know what direction I wanted to take in life. I shared a few inspiring websites and methods of introspection I used to find what I’m passionate about, and it made me semi-fondly remember my struggle. It was so discouraging while I was in the midst of it, but now I see it was all a learning process and I’m grateful now for the post-struggle clarity.

Sigrun went to the restroom and I sat thinking about how far I’ve come in the last 2 years and how many supportive, wonderful people have helped me along the way. I thought about the wonderful folks who took a chance by hiring me when I decided I wanted to be a photographer full time, and the people who repeatedly hire me now and allow me to continue to be a part of their incredible events and projects… and then I thought about the unexpected and overwhelming support I received when I decided to take this crazy adventure. I am one lucky son-of-a-gun!…  Eureka! Time to pay it forward!, I decided.

When Sigrun returned I told her I wanted to pay forward the incredible support I’d received back home by investing in whichever project she wanted to start working on first. I couldn’t have gotten where I am without the encouragement of others who believed in me so I want to be someone who supports her on her path. I see a lot of potential in Sigrun. She has passion and drive and enthusiasm for everything but can’t quite pin down a starting point (yet!). Once she finds something to dig into I think she’ll be unstoppable. She bashfully accepted and immediately promised she’d use it towards something amazing. I told her I didn’t care if she spent it on supplies for a new business or on a weekend retreat to clear her head. Sometimes stepping away from life is also a step towards clarity. Taking that rejuvenating (and bank draining) adventure to Italy with Jason in 2011 was actually a huge catalyst towards quitting my job to follow my passion.

Before we left the bar I asked the bartender if she’d divulge the recipe for my delicious drink and she generously wrote it down for me. I’m so excited to try to make it at home and share it with friends!

We headed back home and Andy made us a delicious veggie and noodle dinner. There is nothing like a hot, satisfying dinner after so much walking. I talked to Jason for a bit after dinner and then nodded off early, exhausted after such a fulfilling day.Iceland_20140603_Reykjavik-86_WEB


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