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Sunshine in a pot and other good stuff

Yesterday was a perfect day. Brilliant sunshine in the morning, so EPI and I had the instant desire to stick our cross-country skis in the car and head up to Heiðmörk*.

First, though, we had to go grocery shopping at Krónan [formerly known as stupid old Krónanwe shall see if they manage to amend their ways in their brand-new shiny store] to pick up something yummy for dinner that could marinate while we were enjoying the great outdoors. [Incidentally, where besides Iceland do can you bump into the Prime Minister at your local discount supermarket? Methinks nowhere.] As it happened, Krónan had potted Crysanthemums and Begonias on special, so we bought one of each, which was like bringing home sunshine in two pots.

Before heading to Heiðmörk, though, we had a brief stop to make. EPI’s mother would have turned 80 yesterday, had she lived, so first we headed to Blómaval to pick up a rose. [While there, we couldn’t resist adopting a few more flowering plants: three miniature crysanthemums, and four pots of tête-a- têtes, the most delightful harbingers of spring in my opinion.] Up in the cemetery everything was covered in snow, so EPI made an angel on his mother’s grave, just like she’d taught him to make when he was a boy.

Heiðmörk was exquisitely beautiful as always. By the time we got there it was around 4.30 and the shadows were growing long. The sun was still intense, though, and the snow looked it had flakes of glitter scattered on it. We skiied for about an hour and a half, and towards the end the sky was exquisite and snow was all pink and blue. Mind you, it had got pretty cold by that time [with the sun gone and everything] so YT was suffering an attack of Raynaud’s Syndrome, which was rather unpleasant. It must be said: I was not designed for winter sports.

Still, it was totally worth it, and just twenty minutes later we were snug back at home, where we our lamb filets were waiting for us in the perfect stage of marination, along with their compatriot, a bottle of Chilean Merlot. Perfect.

TODAY IS NOT QUITE SO LOVELY

There’s a miserable cold wind out there and the whole day is flat and uninspiring. At noon today the good people of the Westman Islands were being advised to stay inside their homes on account of the weather – apparently they were experiencing the greatest amount of snowfall since 1968 and even rescue squad vehicles were getting stuck. The dreaded cold puddle is still very much active, I see. Right now -1°C [30F] and feels like -8/17F. Sunrise this morning was at 8.30 am and sunset due for 6.50 pm.

* Nature reserve on the outskirts of Reykjavík.

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