Eight Hours in Keflavik International Airport

This entry was supposed to read “Eight Hours in Reykjavik.” Alas, it was not to be.

I arrived in Keflavik International Airport (KEF) at 11:15PM, and have a transfer flight leaving the airport at 7:35AM. Eight hours in Reykjavik! Dancing in the streets! Floating in geothermal springs! Chatting it up with locals!

The nice lady at the bus counter looked at me in horror and just said, “Oh, nein.” The young man at the Duty Free register concurred. The elderly gentleman just looked at me and said, “American?”

Yes. Yes, sir, I am.

Apparently, Reykjavik closes down early. You’d think the opposite, what with the midnight sun and geothermal springs – the U.S. would have those open 24 hours and double admission for tourists and I would pay that fee, thank you – but I tend to follow the three-strikes rule. If three locals look at you in pity/horror, stay in the airport it is.

However, I refused to depart without at least stepping foot on Icelandic soil. They had stamped my passport, after all. So I walked past baggage claims, stepped outside to the glorious open-air carport that is KEF, and that is where I saw this:

A dinosaur emerges, or possibly a kumquat, at the Keflavik International Airport. Photo credit Jennifer Doody.
A dinosaur emerges, or possibly a kumquat, at the Keflavik International Airport. Photo credit Jennifer Doody.

What IS that? I love it. I want to know everything about it. Is it a dinosaur egg? A kumquat? A resounding tribute to Iceland’s thriving and noble eggplant community? No idea. It’s right outside the airport entrance, but I found no sign, no explanation, nothing.

But this is why God gave us the internet, so I can tell you that that, my friends, is the “Jet Nest.”

Designed by Magnús Tómasson, to whom I have just sent a facebook friend request, the Jet Nest “shows a big steel egg where a jet wing is peeking out like a little bird breaking out of it’s (sic) egg. The piece is very simbolic (oh, dear. Sic) where it stands on a pile of Icelandic rocks. Magnús Tómasson, the designer, says that the idea first came to him many years ago. ‘I was working on a series on the history of birds mentioning a small egg and on it a small beek (Eek! Sic) appears. I worked on it some more and the outcome was the Jet Nest, my biggest piece.’ It is situated north of the air terminal in a floodlight pond.” (source)

The omens are clear: I must interview Magnús Tómasson.

(Sidebar: check out the midnight sun in that pic! It was taken at 11:45 PM. I am very far north, my friends. It is now 12:30AM, and it is barely dusk-ish.)

I have messaged Magnús to request an interview on this piece. Watch this space.

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