Olafsfjordur, Iceland

Olafsfjordur, Iceland
Olafsfjordur, Iceland

Saturday, 19 March 2016

Trapped !

Hello - it's been ages since I last wrote anything and I have returned to Glasgow. The concrete and greyness is pretty underwhelming and dirty looking.


Though I walk past here every day on my way to work - I'm sure it's a feedback comment someone must have had which amuses me greatly, it's an exhibition, which I've not been in yet. 
But as you can see it's sunny, in fact the weather hasn't been too bad since I've been back.

But the most exciting thing for me at the moment is 'Trapped ' the Television programme which I am watching avidly. Not just filmed in the north of Iceland but in Siglufjordur the next town to where I was. 



If you haven't seen it and don't live in Iceland or Britain you may not know what I am talking about, but you can still enjoy the pictures. 




Here is a view of Siglufjordur from the school bus. 




Here is the bus and the School, in real life and in the series ( where the Ferry Passengers are staying ) 




Here is the mountain and the town, they drive around here. 




I've seen this building in it loads of times. 




The programme is actually very dark and in reality the town is laid back and quite pretty. 




Although these pictures are of locations I've spied. 




It is a brilliant and sometimes slightly gruesome programme, but done so brilliantly and understated. If you can watch it do. 
It's quite a bleak image of the town though. They never show you things like this 




I'd have liked to have met the person who lives there - or this 




Or this - the only town I saw cats in. ( I soon realised my new career as ' Iceland's cats calendar 2017' photographer was doomed.) 




Or much of the coloured houses 





And I've seen my favourite boat only once



So don't be put off, Siglufjordur is a bit of a Tourist destination when the weather is better. There's a Hostel right on the water that I'm considering for the future, a huge ski slope, a gallery which also has performances, a bakery and coffee shop which was great and a few restaurants or eateries which are open in the summer. 

And by the way the people all seemed good ! 

Friday, 4 March 2016

Every Day's A School Day


 What a lovely ( borrowed) phrase. 




Whatever age we are we never stop learning. 




In Olafsfjordur I learnt to slow down 




The pace of life is slower, there seems to be more time for thinking and being and more time for others because people aren't rushing around all the time, even though many of them need to do two jobs for the benefit of the community. People don't give the impression of having too much to do, but everything always runs on time.




So I learnt to be more calm which is great because I'm always rushing around, late and trying to fit too many things in. I'll aim to be more conscious of it. 




Nature is all around and it is so much bigger than us, the weather, the seasons and the landscape is definitely in charge in Iceland. Many of us with our urban lifestyles seem to have forgotten to listen and live with nature. 




I learnt that spending a lot of time on my own was really enjoyable, I never felt alone because everyone was so close by. 




I learnt to love the quiet and silence. I'm finding lots of noises vying with each other too much now. So music can only be loud if listening to it is all you are doing.




That Icelandic people in general appear to be amazing,quirky, respectful,kind, creative, warm, conversational and friendly. Of course not everything can be perfect but my experiences were all good. 




It wasn't just about Icelandic people. The Skammdegi Artists came from lots of different countries, and even though everyone's main focus was their work, to connect and engage with each other and the local community was at the heart of everything. 




Family in Iceland is really strong, people have big families and very big extended families. Perhaps your surname strengthens this - you are either somebodies son or somebodies daughter as in Bill Angiesson or Betty Angiesdottir. ( I made that up using myself ) unfortunately though I think it is always the fathers name with son or daughter at the end, though if the father is unknown I don't know how that works. 
( we're all someone's daughter , we're all someone's son - this song is a bit of an ear worm for me, if I've passed it onto you, you're welcome ) 




I also learnt that the Aurora doesn't really look like how you see it in photographs, it's hard to see the colours with the naked eye unless it's very strong, but that what you do see is the incredible movement. A phone camera will not take good pictures. 




I also learnt to make this blog and to do some writing and take a lot of photographs,which I have really enjoyed doing even though it takes me so long. And also how much people love these pictures so I've put plenty in here. 




Rita, Gretchen and Liz learnt things too but they'll tell you another time. 




Ooh - I did learn that I'm way too old for selfies and that you should really take a lot more photographs of yourself when you are young and then just stop. Though we are rarely happy with our own image whatever age we are. 

Monday, 22 February 2016

Dark Days are over

The Dark Days or Skammdegi are over - or at least the Skammdegi festival is. 






The end of the long dark days in the north of Iceland is certainly coming to an end. 




But winter and snow will be here a good while longer.




The Skammdegi Artists who have been exploring the dark winter are sad that their time here is coming to an end.




Because to us the dark winter has been positive and enlightening. 




A chance to make work 




A chance to make friends 




An opportunity to enjoy the amazing landscape 




A lot of Icelanders find it dark and slightly depressing even, probably because their summer times are so long and fantastic, not temperature wise but lightness wise.




But for us we find so much in this dark winter, not just through nature, but through the people and their culture and way of life.




Yes we have only skimmed the surface, and everywhere can have both positives and negatives to it. But we have loved it and are sad to leave and hoping to return. 




Some left today but struggled to get the bus on time.




Others were so sad leaving today, but look as though they may have come to terms with their departure by drowning their sorrows in Reykjavik.

Friday, 19 February 2016

Love is in the air



There was so much love in the air and not just because it was Valentines Day. 




Liz opened the museum. 




There were flowers - even ones made of ice 




Some lovely people came 




Hanna and Jon.... there is more to his name - anyway they are lovely ! 




Lenka who is lovely she invited Liz to her house that afternoon for her daughters birthday party. I went instead and had a really nice time in their beautiful house with some lovely people and  tasty food.




There was so much love the museum stayed open the whole day and 
Ida and her family made the Artists a special meal at the Kaffi which was really great and the Artists enjoyed themselves and played outside for a bit. 




All in all as Astridur Iskleif likes to say ' it was a lovely day'