I woke up in a familiar settings on this last morning of my 2013 Icelandic Ring Road trip. After a couple of weeks of sleeping in a tent, trailer and rental apartment, it was nice to wake up in my own bed in the family’s summer house in Skorradalur.
We did not stay long in Skorradalur, but left before lunch after having harvested some rhubarb and salad. It was time to close the Icelandic Ring Road trip by heading to Reykjavík with a quick lunch stop at Geiri’s bakery in Borgarnes. Driving along Vesturlandsvegur (Western route), crossing the intersection with Suðurlandsvegur (Southern route), the ring was closed. I was back on the capital after having driven the 1,339 km from Reykjavík to Reykjavík.
In the previous couple of weeks I had distributed short stories along the Icelandic Ring Road, advertising my short story collection 999 Abroad. As I had some leftover flyers I and since it was the Reykjavík Culture Night, I decided to turn the surplus short stories into a culture night edition.
I stepped off the bus at Hlemmur and walked into the cloudy night, making my way down Laugavegur, heading for the main culture night venue in Lækjargata. The streets were wet from the previous rain and the sky was preparing for the next shower.
I followed the flow downtown, thinking about which strategy I should adopt to distribute the flyers. Should I hand them to people I met on my ramble? Should I drop into cafés and distribute them there? My previous experience with the two approaches discouraged me and I decided to go with the flow and think of a strategy on the fly.
After a quick stroll downtown I settled on a spot in front of a bookstore, took out my flyers and started offering the short stories to people passing by. As in my previous handout experience, the reception was mixed. Some people refused while some people accepted. Some people rejected my offer even before I could introduce myself while some people stopped to chat after accepting a story.
My favorite interaction of the night was with a man who was waiting for his family outside the bookshop. I gave him a copy of the Elves and kings. He read the story while waiting and upon finishing it he walked over to me to give his feedback. I was delighted to hear that he had liked the story and found it funny. Live feedback from readers is the best thing an author can get.
After finishing all the flyers I headed for Arnarhóll where I listened to some live music by Hjaltalín and Sálin hans Jóns míns. I stayed there for a while until it started raining. Then I decided it was time to end my Icelandic Ring Road journey by walking in the rain, back to my parents’ place, where I’d relax for a few days before returning to Barcelona.