Crushed Hopes of a Sunny Easter Holiday (JB)


Júlíana Björnsdóttir's picture

As I sat down to write these words, I was still recovering from cold legs syndrome. It’s not uncommon for me to have the shivers while walking my dog Emma on a windy day with wet snow in my face.

This was the case last week, a day before the Easter holidays commenced and I spent the whole evening under a blanket with hot coffee to keep me warm.

Rain and snow right before Easter is what we call Páskahret or the 'Cold Spell of Easter.'

Nonetheless, we make the best of it and most people organize a good weekend for themselves and their loved ones.

Activities likes skiing and hiking are also popular.

Most of us try to exercise or at least take walks in our free time during the Easter holiday, as we anticipate plenty of munching on chocolate Easter eggs filled with licorice and other sweets.

But really, what is it that causes this strange and sometimes sudden shifts in weather?

I have no idea. And I have wondered about it for years.

Whatever the reason, believe it or not, people pull out the barbecue and grill up a feast.

I have often written about the weather and I do it for a different reason every single time. The Icelandic weather in all its glory is temperamental, occasionally mean-spirited, but usually simply too easily excitable and enthusiastic.

A day may start out all sunny and beautiful but as it comes to an end, grounds may be covered with snow.

Iceland is truly a peculiar place to visit and spring is the open veil that drifts from winter to summer and back again, choosing a side at its leisure.

There is still plenty to do in Iceland at this time of year, like going to the music festival Aldrei fór ég suður (“I never went south” meaning “I never went to the city”) in Ísafjörður, the small but largest town in this strangely shaped peninsula in the northwest of Iceland.

Akureyri, the capital of the north, is fabulous for skiing (as is Ísafjörður) and it’s close to my favorite place in Iceland, Mývatn. In the town of Akureyri there is plenty to do such as theater shows, high end restaurants and yes, pretty good hotels.

So why am I home for Easter rather than visiting these locations?

The truth is that my car is not particularly well-equipped to travel in these regions when the weather is as unpredictable as it is and the short flights can be expensive this time of year.

Hotels, well, they are not cheap either, at least not the nice ones and I never feel like I’m away when staying in a hotel in Iceland.

And then there’s my carsick dog, Emma. But if you have a decent raincoat, fabulous shoes that can take a bit of crazy weather, a decent car and OK weather, do come for a visit on the wild side.

Júlíana Björnsdóttir – [email protected]

Views expressed here are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Iceland Review.