In Iceland, people are serious about catching rays when the sun shines. It’s almost as if people just collapse wherever they happen to be in the summer to enjoy the sunshine. Recently I looked out my window and saw a full-grown man lying prostrate on a piece of grass beside the bank parking lot. I love to see people here enjoying the warmth of nature and not taking it for granted.
Naturally, when we got to Finland I wanted to soak up every last bit of summer. One afternoon I went outside to take the trash out and couldn’t bear the thought of going back indoors. I laid down in a sunny spot on the grass by our parking lot. After a few minutes, I turned my head around and spotted a man watching me from his top-floor window. I laid my head back down and figured he’d eventually get over whatever he was looking at. Next thing I know there is a different man looking very concerned coming out the apartment door towards me. He was speaking very fast in Finnish and I just stared, my tired mind not quick enough to think of what to say. Finally he paused, figured out I wasn’t understanding him, and sputtered out, “You…take…sun?”
It finally occurred to me that lying down in a random patch of grass was rather alarming to him. “Ummm….yeah….I think so,” was all I managed to get out. That appeared to appease him and he went back inside. Apparently it is NOT so normal to collapse in the sun here.