From Iceland — Perfect Day: Snæi Jack

Perfect Day: Snæi Jack

Published October 25, 2022

Perfect Day: Snæi Jack
Josie Gaitens
Photo by
Art Bicnick

Snæbjörn Helgi Arnarsson Jack wears many hats—broadcaster, musician and community organiser, to name but a few. His perfect day in Reykjavík involves inclement weather, the best lunch deal in town, and a sneaky rooftop spot.

A-type ideals

I wake up in my big white bed with clean sheets. I wake up at seven, because I have set an alarm for seven because I want to be an A-type person. But of course I have to snooze it. I wake up again at eight, and then at nine, and then at ten when I finally get to my feet I make some nice coffee and have some skyr for breakfast.

I recently found out that skyr is cheese. People think it’s yoghurt but we actually put in two more ingredients.

Once I’ve finished I go to the pool. My favourite is Sundhöllin because it’s the closest one to my house. I go straight to the steam bath, then the cold pot. I’m not exercising, I’m just getting my blood circulating. I run into a very dear friend, maybe even one I haven’t seen in a long time, but we silently agree not to talk to each other, because it’s the unspoken rule. The social contract is that the pool is a place of rest. Sometimes resting means speaking to friends. Sometimes resting means not speaking to friends.

An honest meal

When I get out, there is a new issue of Bændablaðið waiting for me. I leave the pool and the weather is grey—but the blue kind of grey. It’s going to rain later. I’m listening to a horrible audiobook, and I’m thinking, “this is not a nice book.” Controversial opinion, some people think it’s really great. I think it’s well written, but I kind of hate listening to it. So I take my headphones out and walk listening to the surroundings. I think that’s better.

It’s noon and I go to Vitabar to have my lunch. I get the vegetarian blue cheese burger. It’s such an honest place. They have Thule on tap.

I see two of my old teachers who are on lunch break from Tækniskólinn. I have nice memories of them. I don’t speak to them. It just warms my heart to see them.

Photo by Art Bicnick

Seeing the city

I have a date with some friends, we’re going to go to Kolaportið. It’s the weekend now—it wasn’t before. On my way there I walk past Hallgrímskirkja, and I sneak into the elevator and go to the top floor, just to get a brief overview of the situation. Reykjavík is still there, it’s alright. The bells ring, hurting my ears.

I meet my friends at Kolaportið. I buy Söl. We pose as documentary filmmakers and take a boat trip to Engey. Because I’m curious.

When we get back we go to Deig, to have a Poor Man’s Offer. Because it’s a perfect day, it’s taking place in early 2021, and the offer is only 1,000 krona. On the way out I see one of the staff and they ask me how am I doing. And I say that I am not doing that well, that I am having a lot of things to do. They go in the back, fill up a bag with pastries, give it to me and say, “I believe in you.” It’s that perfect, you know.

Wine and wind-down

It’s raining now. We head towards Ríkið, but on the way we see a little door, and because we’re all full time pranksters and trespassers, we walk in there. We go onto the roof and look at the new graffiti there.

At Ríkið we buy two bottles of Côtes du Rhône and take bus number 11 to Grótta. It’s really raining now. One of us has a pocket knife—it’s me. In my pocket knife, that I found by the yellow lighthouse in Grandí, I have a bottle opener. Which is lucky.

We drink wine and put our feet in the tiny little hot pot until it’s dark and we’re all super wet from the rain. We take the last bus home and go to 12 Tónar. Everyone is there and there is someone nice doing really lovely DJ work. Finally, I go home and watch Beserk with my girlfriend.

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