We woke up as early as we could on our second day in Iceland. There was no breakfast waiting for us that day, but that was okay as I already knew where I wanted to take Tyler for his morning coffee - Kaffismidja Islands.
Kaffismidja is said to have the best coffee in Iceland, and to be a favorite hangout for locals; we were the only American tourists to seek our breakfasts there, at least. We were very happy we chose them: the cafe was cozy and retro (it has a record player and patrons get to choose which records play); the pastries came with jam and cheese; and the individual coffee trays were a delight.
The rest of the morning and afternoon were dedicated to exploring downtown Reykjavik. Here is a thing about trips with Tyler: I love shopping and he hates it; he loves beer and I'm not terribly fond of it. So we're always pulling in different directions when we're in a new city. Luckily we're both patient with each other for the most part, and we're able to make compromises. (Mostly that means that I don't get to spend very much time looking at clothes, but it also means that I don't spend as much, so perhaps that's a good thing.)
We looked in a music store, where we found out that CDs are still a thing in Iceland, and that Icelanders know that young American hipsters are probably interested in Sigur Ros records.
We visited Geysir, which evidently began and still operates largely as a store for tourists, but which also carries a variety of high end accents for the home and clothing - including Barbour jackets.
|Tyler bought the Barbour jacket, but he refused to buy the sweater, even though it looked amazing on him. |
"I look like a Christmas Dad," he protested.
|I loved these puffin loafers, but they were not in my budget.|
Since he had been such a patient little shopper, I didn't fuss when Tyler wanted to visit the "Big Lebowski"-themed bar. I've never seen a bar so utterly dedicated to its theme. I've also never seen a bar so deserted, but it was only a bit after noon.
We poked into a couple more cafes after that, just to see what they were like.
|This is what they were like.|
We wandered north, until the tourists thinned and the buildings got a little more beat up. There was lots of fun art on the walls.
|According to Google Translate, the phrase on the right means "lies with the national building."|
And then, finally - the Icelandic Phallological Museum.
|Those lamps you see? ...made out of scrotums. :(|
Or, in layman's terms, a building full of preserved penises.
|Some of them almost as big as me!|
During Seattle's International Film Festival, Tyler and I saw a documentary called "The Final Member," and it was about the original museum curator, Siggi, and his quest to include a human penis in his collection. It was such an oddly charming film that I felt compelled to visit Siggi's pride. Unfortunately, I was underwhelmed by the museum. It felt weird and tacky, devoid of the weird charm of the documentary. I left disappointed in the museum itself, but happy at least that I had quelled my curiosity.
After the museum, we went to one last bar, where Tyler became convinced that he would never find a worthwhile beer in Iceland. (To be fair, they had a Prohibition, too, and the specific ban on beer it was only lifted in the 1980s. Also, there is no such thing as a worthwhile beer.)
|The bars are pretty, at least.|
And then we went home, to prepare for our first adventure...a White Night Hike with GoEcco!
Go to Day 2 Continued: Reykjadalur