My niece Mekkin (who was shown playing with dolphins in an earlier post) is here for the summer, and being fourteen years old is gainfully employed in the unglingavinna program the state provides. Teens (or unglinga) are paid a small but better-than-nothing wage to smarten up the towns and cities by planting annuals and plucking weeds, mowing public lawns and picking trash from park bushes. For most Icelanders it was their first real job, and I'm really proud of Mekkin for choosing to come here from California to improve her Icelandic (she was born here so it's all up there in her head somewhere!), immerse herself in her native culture and show her independence. I used to laugh at the sight of "lazy" teens laying about in parks, pulling weeds at the rate of two or three an hour, but I completely appreciate that nearly all of them choose to take on these jobs as opposed to laying about at home doing nothing for the summer months. When the weather is great like it's been, there's even the added bonus of grabbing a nice tan while they're at it!
This country is undergoing massive growth right now, if all the building and prettification is any sign. Iceland has an overall Can-Do attitude that's manifesting in improvements to infrastructure, the expansion of universities and colleges, an almost overwhelming number of new commercial enterprises and residential neighborhoods, and quite possibly, the application of our natural resources to new and more viable industries. I was wondering the other day if Iceland as a nation has attracted, through our genius blend of historical relevance (we are The Vikings) and size-doesn't-matter arrogance, it's almost incomprehensible prosperity, a la The Secret. The Law of Attraction states that if you believe something to be so, and stay focused on that belief, material reality will manifest that belief. We have always believed ourselves to be special, to be strong, to be survivors and to be creators, and we are. The evidence is manifest and apparent everywhere you look and listen on this best little island in the world.
Posted by Iceland Eyes on July 02, 2007