Lazy Letter: Lost Tourists

Lazy Letter: Lost Tourists

There’s a drive-through in front of our studio. This place used to be a restaurant before they bought the property and turned it into an art studio. So that makes sense. Our cabin is on the left side, a little bit at the back, by the walking trail. You can only see the roof of it from the road, but the studio is quite visible as you pass the village. The cabin must’ve been a home for the restaurant’s owner, I’m just thinking. There are only mountains behind our village. I didn’t know, but Alda said that highlands start beyond this place; rocky deserts and volcanos and valleys and hot springs, all the way up to the north shore. No one lives on the other side of this mountain.

From what I’ve discovered so far, there’s a campsite close by. I used to think the campsite is this empty area on the other side of our house. There’s an empty area by the cabin which has a gate and tap water. There’s a small white cabin which I assume must be the toilet. There are also a couple of benches too, and they all got me thinking that this is the campsite tourists come looking for. I have seen a bunch of cars parking by the gate till morning. Well, the gate is closed; it is cold and snowy, not the perfect weather to camp. People sleep in their cars, I think. Some have rented campervans to be more comfortable, now that they’re not paying for a room.

I see a lot of tourists passing by our village. They pull over by our studio to ask questions. Some of them look for the hostels of the village, and some others look for the campsite. I couldn’t really help them at first, Hannah would answer if they knocked on our door. Later, I had to help them out since I was the only one working in the studio. I would show them the campsite. Would tell them that the gate was closed, but they still could park their car around and sleep the night through.

But, later, in one of my morning jogs down the road, I realized that I was wrong all the while, and the campsite was not where I thought it was, and I have been giving out wrong information. Not that it would make a big difference, but still! I was running down the road, and after ten minutes I saw the camping area, and a huge board saying that this is the place. It should be two or three minutes away if you drive in your car. I felt really bad and guilty. Well, it’s not really my fault; I’m only a visitor myself. I now tell people where the campsite is, and that they still could park their car by that gate if the campsite was closed.

I somehow like seeing the tourists. They might freak you out a bit at night. You can’t see them through the glasses at night. They would knock on our window or the front door, and I have to ask them to come through the back door which is closer to my desk. I now look forward meeting them. To see who’s traveling, guess where they’re coming from by their accents.

It’s now afternoon. My last afternoon. It’s been snowing the whole night, but it was sunny when I woke up. The spring has come, and the snow doesn’t stick around as much. There are tire prints on the fresh snow of the narrow path in front of our place. A car must’ve driven here, looking for something, but the passengers hadn’t found anyone in the studio to ask questions from, and so they’ve turned back to the main road. Funny to see the lost look in their eyes, how confused and puzzled they are, wondering if this road would take them anywhere. It doesn’t. I sometimes wave to the tourists, say hello and smile as they pass by. This one might be the last car I see, I wave to the passengers. I don’t think they saw me.

29.Mar.17 – Laugarvatn, Iceland