|About the Book|
I thought Hettys letters to Nancy were very funny.Bits I liked:Every exciting letter has enclosures,The old woman confessing: He that I loved theBest, to him I was the worst.The songs of jazz have told us of a moon countryAnd we like to dream of a heat which is never sultry,Melons to eat, champagne to drink, and a lazyMusic hour by hour depetalling the daisy.The Borg is called a first-class hotel but is not the kind of thing you like if you like that kind of thing: still it is the only place where you can get a drink.There is a phrase-book for those who find that kind of thing any use, and for the conscientious there is Zoegas English-Icelandic Dictionary (expensive and full of non-existent English words)In the larger hotels in Reykjavik you will of course get ordinary European food, but in the farms you will only get what there is, which is on the whole rather peculiar.Soups: Many of these are sweet and very unfortunate. I remember three with particular horror, one of sweet milk and hard macaroni, one tasting of hot marzipan, and one of scented hair oil.Meat: This is practically confined to mutton in various forms. The Danes have influenced Icelandic cooking, and to no advantage. Meat is liable to be served up in glutinous and half-cold lumps, covered with tasteless gravy. At the poorer farms you will only get Hangikyrl, i.e. smoked mutton. This is comparatively harmless when cold as it only tastes like soot, but it would take a very hungry man indeed to eat it hot.beware of the browned potatoes, as they are coated in sugar, another Danish barbarism.Those who like tea or cocoa should bring it with them and supervise the making of it themselves.The King of Denmark has paid a visit and I watched him come out of the prime ministers house accompanied by distinguished citizens. I know top-hats and frock coats dont make people look their best, but on appearance alone I wouldnt have trusted one of them with the spoons.How embarrassing it is to get into an already crowded bus when the passengers have got to know each other. We felt like the Germans invading Belgium.and we sat and listened to the wireless ... Someone apparently has tried to assessinate King Edward VIII. Nobody looked very interested.and I had run out of cigarettes so just sulked into my waistcoat.Hetty to Nancy:I couldnt see that it was very funny and Maisie is supposed to be witty, but then it is different in London, where people have always been drinking sherry before you say anyhing to them.Anyhow it is a very fine waterfall as waterfalls go but, as Maisie says, they dont go far.One letter opens: Darling, darling, DARLING,Well, on and on we rode through the stinging rain- it was so nasty it was really rather enjoyable. And we all felt rather heroic, I think.The Icelanders are rather proud of it as a show-piece of scenery and no doubt on a clear day it may be quite beautiful if one drives through it quickly in a car.We came across the ancient wreck of a very primitive touring car - more desolate than the bones of a camel in a film about the foreign legion.but the really bad feature of the day was that the guides produced another cave (they ought to be psycho-analysed).