Reykjavik still feels quaint to me, at least in my memories. Yes, I totally realize that it’s a massive tourist mecca, more shops that cater to tourists than a town for the locals anymore. Yet the first time I visited Reykjavik, it still felt like I could be alone in the city.
It was lovely. Some of my favorite moments were just wandering around in the quiet, enjoying the scenery. I had only recently read about lenticular clouds when I ran into this formation just off the lighthouse behind Harpa concert hall. It was so beautiful I wanted nothing more than to sit there for hours and watch how the clouds changed. No one was around. Well, that’s not completely true: there was a man fishing on the other side of the lighthouse (despite the large “no fishing” signs, which tickled me).
Iceland in general is the kind of place that has scenery that lends itself to “snapshot moments”–a perfect moment where you can remember exactly what you were doing and feeling, and you can recall it so vividly.
Like the photo below of the port with these small boats, for instance. Mr. Pretty and I had just had a really great lunch of fish and chips (my meal was batter-dipped salmon), and we were walking over to Búrið, a cheese shop that has an excellent selection of specialty foods from dairy farms and other small, local producers all over Iceland. Mr. Pretty was holding my gloved hand, and the very cold hair was burning my lungs.
There are a dozen of those snapshot memories in my head, all centered in Reykjavik. Perhaps that’s why I’d move there in a second if I could. Clean air. Clean water. Gorgeous scenery. Charm. Maybe it would get old, and maybe I’d start grumbling about all the tourists, too. I don’t know. But I’d always have my memories.