Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Monsoon Ponsoon

The sun in Iceland is surprisingly strong. Despite not being a hot spot when it comes to tanning, one does acquire a tan in the few places of the body regularly exposed to the sun, in my case the face and head – neck-up. For this reason I do not have a very good beach look, something that does not bother me often as I seldom have the opportunity to lounge on sandy shores in a bikini.

At the moment it does though. I am in Thailand, close to lively Kata, as noted on the hotel‘s webpage. I have a brown head and a white body, and as a result I look like someone recovering from a head transplant. This opens up two scenarios if anyone were to ask my about my condition and prognosis, i.e. I can be a head that needed a body or a body that was missing a head.

To get here we had to make three flights, in all 15 hours plus the waiting in airports and the taking off of belts and shoes and removing laptops from bags. Thrilling stuff travelling. Our small group consists of my husband, myself and our teenage daughter. She is not equipped for the heat, having unusually thick hair that reaches to her waist. It acts as a makeshift poncho-fur coat in warm climates and causes her a bit of grievance as this is not helpful attire when being slowly roasted. When we were about to enter the last leg of our flight she had put it up into a bun on top of her head. It was pretty unruly in addition to being one of the larger buns I have ever seen. She asked me if it looked OK and I did not have the heart to tell her that she looked like someone ingeniously trying to smuggle a Pomeranian between countries. Instead I told her she looked great.

But if it was hot during our trip it was nothing compared to what awaited us here. It is extremely humid, something to do with the monsoon season we did not have the smarts to inquire about prior to buying the trip. It is a fact on medical record that thinking is usually a bit hard the first weeks following a head transplant. However, in this case our lack of planning turned out to our advantage. Monsoon, ponsoon – who cares? It is wonderful here, when one dresses according to the climate. We are practically alone in the resort and have the pool and beach to ourselves. The food is great, the people are great and the landscape is amazing.

Our hotel is at the end of a cape so the road away from it only leads in one direction. On this road a row of tailor shops are lined up, the first situated next door to the hotel. We have gone out to dinner and had to walk past the shops and I must note that our progress rate is extremely slow. Few visitors are here at present and we are thus approached by every tailor we pass and offered a suit for my husband. These tailors are really sweet and we don‘t know how to be abrupt and tell them we are not going to buy any suit while here. The reason has nothing to do with the quality, style or craftsmanship, it relates to my husband considering himself too fat these days and wanting to lose weight . He does not want to buy a suit that will be hanging off him in a couple of months – well, at least in his dreams. I guess we will end up making our daughter have them sew something for her. Who knows, maybe suits will soon be all the rave in teenage fashion.

Funnily enough when we checked in the first thing my daughter did was to turn on the TV in the room. She yelled out as the screen was showing an interview with the mayor of Reykjavík, Jón Gnarr. Being dutiful Icelanders we sat down and watched it and I must say he was very entertaining. This is not the place to go through everything he said but to give you an example he noted that Iceland does not want the Euro as it is not cool enough. We want the dollar. To prove his point he said that you never see Euro in a movie title while there are loads of movies called something, something dollar. A Fistful of Dollars – something that appeals to people, while nobody would go see a movie titled a Fistful of Euros. Asked about our application into the European Union he said it was baloney, the European Union would soon be applying to enter Iceland.

So that‘s it for now. We are taking scuba diving lessons and have a trip out to sea scheduled for the weekend. I can hopefully report something about what I find below the shimmering, rolling waves next week.

In space no one can hear you scream – underwater no one notices your crummy tan.

Yrsa - Wednesday


  1. I need not say "Enjoy." You obviously are!

  2. Years ago I spent three months (summer months) in Ireland. Except for Sundays (they must have made a deal with the Lord because in those days, it really was a day of rest) it rained for part of everyday. This in no way intruded on anyone's plans because if you waited for a day without rain, you only got one in seven.

    A raincoat of some sort or an umbrella was always a necessity. Unfortunately, I have never acquired the skill set necessary for carrying an umbrella without coming close to taking someone's eye out. So, at the end of the summer the only thing that indicated any exposure to the elements was the darkened skin tone on my hands. When the raincoat came off there was a tan line. I looked like I spent every day wearing leather gloves. This led to some very strange looks from people when I got home.

  3. Your sense of humor is wonderful. As much as I enjoy your books, i never would have guessed that you were so funny. I hope your vacation goes well and your tan become more-um-overall?

  4. Hi Jeffrey - thanks, I sure am. It is a really lovely country. I have to go to Greece soon as well, did not want to because I was afraid that bewteen the volcanoes and your strikes I was pretty much ....well you know what.

    Hi Beth - I understand the leather gloves very well, having the head to match.

    Hi Lil - thank you, it is nice to know you like the posts. I used to write humor before writing crime, I sort of miss it and yet I don't. It is very hard to be funny all the time - nice to only have to be funny on Wednesdays.

    bye Yrsa