Af góðu upphafi vonast góður endir.
A good beginning makes a good ending.
If this Icelandic proverb is anything to go by, my trip was destined for disaster the moment it began…
I’ve been planning my Icelandic adventure since September. I always find that the moment I’m abroad, the travel bug hits, and I just want to go on more and more trips. So when I returned from Dublin, nothing would settle my mind until I had booked and paid for Iceland.
I always use Travefy when creating the itinerary for my trips. One day I’ll have the chance to buy a one way ticket and just explore what the world has to offer, with no commitments to hold me back. But with the time constraints that come with being in full time education, I have to plan my trips down to the smallest detail to ensure I make it back in time.
I had the tours booked, the tickets printed, and the bags packed. I knew what I wanted to see. And I thought I knew how to get to the apartment where I’d be staying with an Airbnb host.
I was mistaken.
As usual when I don’t know when I’ll next have Internet access, I screenshotted the directions from the Bus Terminal. I’d bought a FlyBus ticket from Keflavik Airport and when I landed, it was relatively simple to find the coach and hop on-board.
I exited the building, pulled out my phone, and began to follow the map for the half an hour walk to my new home.
Unfortunately, when I screenshotted, I had the phone screen rotated. What was north became south. What should have been a left turn from the Bus Terminal became a right. Since the directions were so simple – follow the main road until I arrive at my destination – it was a very long time before I realised my mistake.
As in, after half an hour walking, I came to the end of the pavement. The rest was blocked off by a no entry sign. Confused, I ducked around it and headed to an abandoned petrol station, where a taxi driver was filling her car.
She confirmed that I was over an hour away from my destination.
Perhaps due to the look of horror on my face, she offered to show me to the bus stop. This would have been great, except buses in Iceland only take cash, and I hadn’t had the chance to visit an ATM yet. I explained this to the woman, a sinking feeling in my stomach at the choice of another hour’s march or the price of an extortionate taxi fare.
She took me to the apartment free of charge!
I was so relieved and grateful to finally collapse into bed after a long journey. I must have looked a sight dragging aside a plant pot in the early hours of the morning to find the key my Airbnb host had left for me.
Oh well, lesson learned. I’ve now locked my phone screen so that the map will always point north, and downloaded a compass for extra security.
Despite the rough start, Iceland is looking like a promising experience. Stay tuned for more!