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Living like the Icelandic

ICELAND | Thursday, 22 October 2015 | Views [428]

I arrived in Akeyuri after a 6 hour bus trip from Reykjavik. On the journey I met a girl from Belgium who was also heading to a working holiday in North Iceland. The bus driver spoke little English and we were both struggling to work out what he was saying or where we were heading. I am also 90% sure he was the Icelandic actor from Walter Mitty. About three hours into the bus trip the northern lights appeared outside the window and for the remainder of the bus ride the lights danced around the sky (Not my normal 117 bus ride through west lakes that's for sure). 

When I arrived to Akeyrui I was picked up by one of my hosts. I already knew they would be lovely because they went out of their way to pick me up at midnight after I had missed my bus. The family I was staying with ran a guest house about 5km away from Akeyrui on a beautiful farm. As I arrived at night I could not see what the farm looked like but in the morning when I opened my blinds I was speechless- what an incredible view. 
The hosts had three kids, all of which were extremely shy and only spoke Icelandic. This did not bother me one bit as I do not like kids and much prefer talking to adults. I was only going to be spending 5 days with the family before they headed for a holiday to Spain. I spent my first day cleaning up the guesthouse. This was super easy for me as I am used to cleaning all the time with my past work away and also my job back home (I am toilet/vacuum cleaner queen). When my work day was finished I took a stroll around the backyard and hung out with my little horse friends (only as a substitute because there were no huskies around). For dinner we had their version of a Icelandic lasagna- amazing. 
For the next few days it was my task to sort and clean out their shed. This was definitely not fun seeing as they had a room of dead animals and I was pretty shocked to see the kids who were 6 and 10 carrying around 30 dead geese. My other task was to try and find a runaway rabbit and chicken. I spent a good afternoon chasing a crazy screaming chicken around an Icelandic farm and questioned what I was doing with my life. 
On the last night with the family they dropped me off to the local pool just outside Akeyuri. Scandinavian countries require you to shower naked before entering a pool and this place had no private showers. I went against the rules, showered in my bathers and did not realise that they required you to wash your hair as well. I was the only foreigner there, surrounded by old naked Icelandic showering in my bathers and they looked at me like I was the devil- I am not joking. However, the pool was 100x times better then the Blue Lagoon, had an incredible view of the mountains and at one point I had the whole pool to myself. 
When I met my host for the first time he said 'Welcome to the real Iceland' and he was right. I believe spending time and volunteering with families is the best way to learn and travel. I ate ice-cream from a local farm, did the weekly shopping with the family, saw the northern lights three times from my bedroom window, climbed the town mountain and found out that my host is related to the drummer from the The Vaccines- all in five days. An incredible experience with this Icelandic family and I will definitely be back to visit! 
P.S They have love heart traffic lights here!

Tags: iceland


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