April 8, 2016 – Reykjavik

Dear world,

It is a cold and drizzly day in Reykjavik and we are taking it easy before our final few days of outdoor adventuring.

Dario is fast asleep beside me, tucked in for an afternoon nap, and I am lying in bed listening to the wind whipping outside.

We had a lazy morning, sleeping in and fixing breakfast and then crawling under the covers again to watch Silver Linings Playbook. Outside it was damp and chilly, hovering around zero degrees, and we felt happy to hide out for a few hours.

Eventually we gathered the courage to venture outside and walked through town to the Loki Café, a little yellow restaurant right across from the church we visited yesterday.

Dario ordered the “Iceland Braveheart” meal, which featured samples of dried fish and butter, thick home-made rye bread and butter, flat bread, the infamous fermented shark meat and a shot of Brennivin, a liquorice liquor that is popular here.

I had the traditional meat stew and a slice of rye bread thickly spread with butter and lamb pate, and tea on the side.

I liked both my dishes — the soup was hearty and the bread moist and sweet — but the verdicts were mixed on Dario’s adventurous lunch. The fish didn’t taste like much and the texture was chewy and leathery, meanwhile the shark smelled overwhelmingly of fermentation, had the texture of sashimi, and tasted…well, about how you’d imagine rotten shark would taste.

Still, Dario says the shark is popular here, where locals enjoy it between shots of Brennivin, and we were happy that we tried the dish, even if our taste buds weren’t Icelandic enough to properly appreciate it.

After lunch we wandered back through the rain, making a stop at the grocery store to buy some fresh local salmon for dinner tonight and some chocolate just because.

I called home and chatted for a while with Mum, finding it hard to believe that in just one week I’ll be moving to Vancouver and enjoying a very different set of mountains and ocean.

How did I get so lucky?

Emily

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