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Some shots from a recent Saturday walk around the neighborhood...

I don't usually share more than one or two, maybe three, pictures per post, which has helped me to really have to choose images that resonate with me, or that prompt some writing. So this post is out of character. I'm actually working on creating ebooks for download with walking tours of our world here, with short descriptions of the scenes I run across. This is a very basic sampling of that concept:

This charming girl was sitting on Klapparstígur with a sign that reads, "I am a French woman," in not-so-grammatically-correct Icelandic. The two men are local down-and-outers. I have no idea what her purpose was, but she was having fun.
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I'd seen this tourist down on Austurstræti with her friend/companion. Here she's taking a rest on the way up Bankastræti, with the Government House in the background.

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Up the hill, at the intersection of Skólavörðurstígur and Laugavegur, a wacky girl band was collecting money for the Red Cross, which made everyone smile.

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Even though I love getting shots of color and life here in the city, I'm also fascinated by dereliction and decay, especially when examples can be found right close classic tourism areas. I knew the family that lived in this house on Baldursgata, just off Skólavörðurstígur, in the early 90's and it's sad to see how dismal it has become. The graffiti reads, "Correct me," while the shockingly large asp that's growing from the crack between the foundation and sidewalk is both a testament to neglect and to Nature's tenacious will to thrive.

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Just a bit farther down Baldursgata is another house in a very sorry state. It burned in November, 2008, just after the bank collapse, which gave it the suspicious smack of arson, especially given its recent history. A sad sight, for sure.
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The interesting thing about this location is that it clearly shows how decay doesn't have to mean ugly. I've passed by this backyard shed on Kárastígur (where our favorite hostel, Our House, is located) a hundred times and have always loved the remote Eastern European feel of this scene.

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After all this walking I needed some nourishment, so I stopped by the Noodle Station and got to listen to the romance victories and woes of these American (Canadian?) girls at the next table. We love Noodle Station!

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After eats, I spotted an acquaintance of mine who looked so retro-metropolitan cute that I had to ask her to pose for me.

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And finally, to wrap up this post with another splash of red corrugated iron, is this shot of a classic wood-frame house peeking over the fence of a very weathered home on Frakkastígur, which I'm sure many of you have passed on your travels through town : )

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Have you tried Dynamic Viewing yet? Five new views in all. Use the blue tab at the top of the view page to check them all out : )

15 comments:

Ian said...

Great photos! Thanks for the "tour".

THE ICELAND said...

I really like your photos in all your posts. I think they represent the diversity of everything in Iceland and there is always something going on in Reykjavik, does not matter what month it is

Anonymous said...

"...remote Eastern European feel of this scene..."

Hmmmm. Not quite but great picture anyway.

Greets from Romania

seinean said...

I can see now that my comment was somehow ambiguous. What I ment was "not quite so remote". We are just next-click neighbours in the virtual hood :).

Iceland started to be known in Eastern Europe. Maybe the literature of the ones like Arnaldur Indridason and Yrsa Sigurðardóttir is not the finest Icelandic intelectual bread but it is quite popular and revealing.

Sjáumst

Iceland Eyes said...

Seinean, is that your comment signed Anonymous? If so, I thought it was actually pretty funny because of course I have little idea (aside from National Geographic magazines ;) what remote Eastern Europe looks like! I totally generalized, which people do all the time when it comes to the life they imagined I lived in California, or of course what Iceland is really like. Thank you for calling me on my b.s.!

It's interesting to find out that our new wave of crime writers are helping to put Iceland on the map over in your part of the world. A very cool development for sure.

Oh, and takk Ian and The Iceland. Be sure to keep visiting!

seinean said...

"...new wave of crime writers are helping to put Iceland on the map ..."

Maybe I'm old fashioned but Iceland was actually put on "my map" many, many years ago by Jules Verne's "Voyage au centre de la Terre" and the stories about Erik the Red and Leif Eriksson.

The new wave of crime writers do help by allowing glipses of what life in modern Iceland might be like. It is interesting, refreshing, appealing.

Greets from Bucharest, Romania

Iceland Eyes said...

You should definitely come visit our island! Romania somewhere I'd really like to go, so hopefully I'll make it out there some day : )

seinean said...

I would definitely like to visit Iceland someday.

A nice documentary about Romania was made for Travel Channel. It is called "Wild Carpathia" and you can watch it at:
http://vplay.ro/watch/hbevjwit/

And - as a bonus - you can listen to "The Skylark" based on a Romanian folk song here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g5MQDy-I5XE

Beth said...

Wonderful photos and commentary - thank you for taking me back to Reykjavik for a walk with you!

GMT said...

Very nice photos!! Actually I prefer the panoramic views, so the photo from Hallgrímskirkja tower (although from previous post) is better for me.

In Greece Iceland got widely known (except for the geography or "which is the capital of..." or football matches) through the NO icelandic people said to "Icesave".

So, is this the huge NO you captured in a previous photo in front of the tower?

Iceland Eyes said...

I wish I could say that it was, GMT, but the NO that I posted (http://icelandeyes.blogspot.com/2012/01/synchronicity.html) was part of an art installation. it certainly was appropriate, though, wasn't it?

And Beth, I hope you also make it over here soon : )

Viszlát Sjáumst said...

Very cool, Maria - a few more of these multi-pic posts would be great... I'll be sure to keep my eyes peeled for these spots as I'm wandering the streets come June.

Finally booked my return trip after 13 long years. I'll be there the first w/end in June - so any must-see suggestions are certainly welcome!

Takk og má vera sjáumst :)

Ed

Solsong said...

I love your "slice of life" photos, and look forward to your ebooks.

When I travel, I usually eschew the usual tourist sights, choosing instead to wander around just seeing what I see. Your photos allow me to do this from afar!

Anonymous said...

nice idea.. thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

love the chaires on the
coffee house )))