ICELAND Day 5: Back To The Future
Is this what it feels like? White noise? Our alarm has been going off for 30 minutes now. The light in the room is blurred. The sound in the room is blurred. The blur in the room is blurred. We’re late for check-out. Our flight is at 4pm but check out is at 10am and we are at a 3 in motivation at 9:45am. What the fuck are we doing with these bags again? Move. I can’t find my socks. I can’t find my gloves. She’s annoyed. I’m frustrated. More white noise. Louder and louder and LOUDER… Does everything fit? Do we have everything? Empty the drawers, check under the bed, look behind the doors, GET OUT OF THE WAY. Sorry sorry SORRY. OK drop off the universal converter and get our money back. Drop our bags off at the front desk-wait a minute AJ is coming?! Oh yeah he’s gonna take us to the flea market. Can we get coffee? When do we call the bus to pick us up? Where do we get breakfast do we have our airplane tickets last night was really fun oh my god my brain is foggy what do you need you need money I need to go outsideeeeeeaaaaaannnnnnnnnndd POP!
The cold air reminds me of the first bite off a fresh apple. I breathe it in and quickly kill the inspiring sensation with a drag from a Camel Blue. I can’t tell which has me more catatonic, the brunch with the milkshake in the middle of the plate or the hangover in the middle of my face. Both of them were sumo wrestler heavy. Inside the restaurant is a painting of Superman hovering behind Stalin. Why wasn’t Superman there for us during the cold war? Superman was a hero for us but what was he for the rest of the world? Was Superman Stalin for Europe? This is stupid. This painting will haunt me for the rest of my life.
The flea market looks like any other flea market in the world, Just one person trying to push his or her junk on someone else at a profit, trading the words “old” and “used” for “antique” and “vintage.” I assume most people who shop at markets like these are romantics, looking for a fairy tale in a wool scarf or adventure in an old army backpack. I run my fingers through an old rack of post cards while my girlfriend holds a Nordic Christmas sweater AJ convinced us to buy. I look at the back of this one card and I see it’s dated 1918. Is it a love letter? The handwriting on the back of the postcard is calligraphy perfect. Whoever wrote this took the time to make sure the message was clear and as perfect as a typewriter with spell-check. I wonder if the author knew what the future of his postcard was. If he would ever imagine that a tourist from New York would pay 5 dollars to own it. Did they even write back?
AJ drives us to the airport. If you ever want to impress someone you just met, a ride to the airport or offering to help someone with a move is better than home-cooking. The soundtrack is Old School House Music with a little bit of 90’s Rap. I can tell he misses New York but is excited about his life in Iceland. He then tells me about a food hustle he was with the some edibles him and his fiancé cook and how he moves dresses and women accessories. I fight back laughing because the first thought in my head was the scene from Baby Boy when Tyrese was slinging Liz Claiborne at the local beauty shop. My second thought was how global he was and how could I get down??? We talk about meeting again in Thailand next April for a monk ceremony as we arrive to our final arctic destination. Yeah I can dig this. My first time out of the country and… yeah. I hug him goodbye like I would hug a friend going off to war. The adventure was over. My flight would leave at 4pm and would arrive in Newark at 6pm from a 6 hour flight. So confusing, I left New York City on a Monday afternoon and got to Iceland Tuesday morning. For all I knew I was in Iceland for 6 days. I just needed some REM sleep in EST… I was going back to the future.
Thank you for your hospitality Iceland. I pray we meet again. Maybe during jacket season.