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1. Start of a Journey

Twenty years ago I headed on a journey that lasted for 20 years and not two weeks like I had been planning. We all set out on journeys like that at some point in our lives and they change us, alter us and sometimes they do last a lifetime.

It was a bit chilly as I stood with my new blue bag on Hyllie station in Malmö waiting for the train to the airport to arrive. After the outstanding summer we’ve been having it felt both strange and comforting that the weather was getting back to normal.

The process of flying to the states is a bit challenging but the complication of all the checkups one has to go through made the time at the airport easy and pleasant and I had no time to be bored at the airport.

And then I was up in the air. The captain telling us that the flight would take two hours less than I had been anticipating and for the first time since that plane ride twenty years ago I felt NO fear of flying. It amused and amazed me and I kept thinking that it would come at some point but it didn't.

What an amazing feeling! Not only was I not afraid I highly enjoyed it. I watched a movie and a few episodes of The O.C. which seemed fitting and I kept an eye on the map - we flew north of Iceland, which was a lot of fun, and we flew over the Greenland glacier (see picture above) which was fantastic to see. Magnificent waves of ice twined with the mountains at first and then the glacier took over and the vast whiteness was more intense than any cloud banks you can imagine.

Going through the U.S. customs took time but once through I could honestly feel that not only had my journey started off well but I was feeling great about it.

I took a small prom to the car rental services where a nice man identified my name as Icelandic and when I told him I’d never been to the states before he told me I’d have to have an American car. I got a bright red Chevrolet and soon I was on my way.

It took about the amount of time google had informed me to drive from the airport and to the hotel. It feels a bit old fashioned with the carpets and the old fashioned furniture, but in a good way. It’s cozy and comfortable and I fell to bed and slept like a baby.

There might be jet lag. I fell asleep early and am awake now at 3.30 but I’ve had quite a bit of rest and am enthusiastic to go exploring tomorrow.

This is a new chapter in my journey and it feels great to have started it.

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