The Village People is a series of micro-interviews with the people who make life in Reykjavík better.
Name & age: Fríða Björk Einarsdóttir, 55
Occupation: Shift manager at Vesturbæjarlaug
How long have you worked here and do you like it? This is my 14th year and I really like it. When I started working here I thought it was just gonna be for a few months, but then when you realise that everyone coming here is so happy and they’re even happier when they’re leaving. That’s why I’ve been here so long.
What other profession would you like to try if there were no limits? I would like to work in a rescue shelter for dogs and cats.
Deep sea or outer space? Outer space. I have this profound respect for the deep sea. Of course we live on an island and there’s all those people who have died [at sea] through the years, so I love the sea, but it scares me too.
What would surprise most people about how things function here? One day everything works perfectly and the next day nothing works. It would surprise people how much maintenance is involved. When we have to close something, people don’t believe us.
What was the weirdest cause of a sudden closure? It’s the classic one: somebody poops in the pool. And I didn’t see it with my own eyes, but once there was a fish in the kids’ pool. It was dead, and we didn’t know if somebody had put it in there, but then we figured a seagull had flown over and dropped it.
Are tourists getting better at following the showering policy? It’s still a big issue. I tell them that if they put on their bathing suit and try to approach the showers, the locals will scream at them. Usually that does the trick. They don’t want to be screamed at. Recently I heard a bunch of girls up there like, “there are so many rules here!”
Aside from not showering, what’s your biggest pet peeve? We have different problems for different pools. I can’t remember which pool it was, but they had to put up a sign that read “don’t dry your balls with the hairdryer.” Old men were doing this.
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