Over the course of the next few weeks, I’ll be posting a tastefully-edited version of the journal I kept during the time I spent in Iceland. You can find all the entries and more on the “Iceland Transcribed” page.
Also, I swear a lot in this one. Sorry, Mom.
I’m back in Reykjavik, staying at Hostel B47 for the night. The silence of Akranes was deafening, and after talking to Mom and a fair amount of crying, I decided to make the capital my home base.
I’ll be honest, I feel like a failure as a traveler for not sticking to my original plan. But plans change, shit hits the fan, and you cry, you curse, you pull up your pants and you fucking deal with it.
So that’s what I did.
There was a hiccup with the bus, though…
I found a stop for bus 57 to Reykjavik, and saw that I had just missed it (by an hour), and had three hours to wait. I considered hitchhiking but decided against it, as I didn’t feel comfortable doing so. Might have something to do with the violence against solo female travelers at home.
So, I waited and read and read and waited.
And waited some more.
And the bus didn’t come.
I waited another five minutes before popping in to tourist information and asking if the bus had a different schedule on Saturdays – something I don’t normally consider because I drive everywhere back at home.
The bus did have a different schedule.
It also only stopped at one location.
Which was not the one I had been waiting at.
But it would be back in town in two and a half more hours, I was assured.
I asked for a piece of paper and marker, wrote REYKJAVIK on it, thanked the girl for her time, and started walking to the edge of town.
Hitchhiking it was, then.
I didn’t get three blocks away from the city center before a silver car pulled over and woman asked, in a heavy accent, “You are going to Reykjavikur?”
I said I was.
“We are too, get in, get in!”
They were a beautiful couple in their early forties, who apparently have a daughter about my age. They asked if I was afraid to travel by myself, and said they would never let their daughter travel alone, but that Iceland was a safe place to do so.
They drove me all the way to my hostel, told me that I should perform regular check-ins with the emergency services app so authorities would know where I was, and gave me the number for police, should I ever need help.
“And don’t be afraid to use it,” he said from behind his scrappy red beard. “That’s what it’s there for.”
So instead of getting drugged, raped, or killed, I was fussed over and protected. Overall a positive first hitchhiking experience.
It was too early still to check in to my hostel, so I picked up some cheap instant dinners and wandered around downtown, stumbling upon a march for the rights of sex workers (that’s what I gathered, anyway; only one sign was in English).
After a few hours, I meandered my way back to the hostel, where I asked Mom to help me plan a few tours, since this whole travel thing is a lot more difficult without a car than I originally expected.
I could kill for one of my roommate’s homemade meals. It’s much too expensive to eat at restaurants all the time, and the frozen pizzas and instant meals taste like salt and cardboard and disappointment.
*** Later ***
As it turns out, I left my toiletries bag in Akranes.
The toiletries bag that has my phone charger in it.
For my phone, which is currently at 3%.
It’s gonna be okay.
Tomorrow is Sunday, so I’ll look around but I think most places will be closed. I booked a tour for Tuesday, so I have tomorrow and Monday to get my hands on a phone charger (and toothbrush, razor, deodorant, etc).
And why am I always so tired? This trip has had a very rocky start. But I know I would spend the rest of my life regretting not going much more than any hiccup or snafu would upset me.
So I’ll cry, I’ll curse, I’ll pull up my pants, and I’ll fucking deal with it. But damn if this doesn’t make things more difficult.
… The toiletries bag had my Prozac in it.
And now my phone’s dead.
Fuck fuck fucking mother fuck shit goddamn it FUCK.
*** Later ***
… So you’ll never guess what I just found….