Love On Iceland

On Saturday evening, I was wakened at approximately 6:30pm (go ahead and judge) by a siren blaring from my phone. Our new lockdown curfew was set to commence at 8pm and the government saw fit to wake me up in order to warn me to stay home. Not to worry: I’ve been home. I’m doing my part. The last time I was out of my home was 3 weeks ago, before Christmas, for bloodwork. The time previous was 3 weeks before that, for an MRI. You get the idea. Medical appointments only. Sean leaves the house for 3 things: food, prescriptions, and work when it absolutely necessitates it. We support the lockdown and the curfew and yes, even the siren. We have radically changed our behaviour in order to support the collective well-being. It’s not easy, but it’s saving lives, so there’s no question that it must be done. There’s also no question that it isn’t always easy. Last weekend we jacked up the heat in the house, dragged our garden lounge chairs out of storage, donned our swimsuits, and served up margaritas, pretending we were on the beach in Mexico, one of our favourite winter escapes. We are travelers. 2020 was the first year we didn’t travel outside of the country, and that’s only partially true because we were actually already in (real) Mexico when we rang in the new year, so we started off the year abroad and had lots of plans to keep it up, all of which had to be cancelled when the pandemic hit. Which is fine. We just miss it. And I bet most if not all of you do too. Even if you’re not in the habit of travelling annually, the mere fact of being on lockdown has given most of us cabin fever, so we’re dreaming of destinations more frequently than ever. Luckily, even lockdown affords us certain escapes, and movies continue to be one of them. They may not be playing in theatres, but they’re still playing right in your living room, and even a made for the Hallmark channel movie like this one can transport you to a new and interesting place.

Most Hallmark movies start off with stock footage of New York City, or perhaps Chicago. They never film there. They film in Utah, or Vancouver. But once in a blue moon, they film in an exotic location, and this is one of those rare and beautiful times when they did just that.

Iceland is a beautiful country; I’ve never been but I’m definitely not opposed! Chloe (Kaitlin Doubleday) heads there when she needs a little adventure and inspiration, tapping her college group of travel buddies to join her, including (accidentally) her ex, Charlie (Colin Donnell). Their tour guide shows them everything that Iceland has to offer – hot springs, shopping, museums, ice caves, the northern lights and more – you might almost think that Iceland paid for a very glossy, live-action, movie-like tourism brochure that aired for 84 minutes on the Hallmark channel. Regardless, it is indeed a thing of beauty and I got to travel there vicariously, no luggage hassle, no bulky parkas, and best of all, no breathing in recycled virus air on a plane for 8 hours!

One day, we will travel again, and it will be splendid. It will not be Hallmark perfect. I won’t find room to pack a different scarf for every day of the week, and my lipgloss will occasionally smudge, or wear off completely. Sean won’t profess his undying love for me, and his sweetest gesture will be carrying around my glitter polka dot Kate Spade tote without complaint. And between you and I, NONE of our friends look good in viking hats. But we will travel again. Until then, you might want to engage in some pure escapism with a Hallmark romance.

9 thoughts on “Love On Iceland

  1. Rosaliene Bacchus

    It is horrible being stuck at home. My last trip into the contaminated zone was on November 24, 2020, for my yearly eye exam. Thankfully, I don’t need to don my swimsuit 🙂 I can escape every weekend into our communal garden spaces.

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  2. Robert Jantzen

    Okay, I sympathize, this is my first summer since 1979 that I did not make it to my second life as an academic in Italy (relativistic astrophysics anyone?). But getting to the point, I actually saw this movie and although I really enjoyed the above cute essay on the pandemic situation, someone forgot to mention ANY details about the plot, which I vaguely recall was quite cute and different from the usual Hallmark fare, and not just because of the scenery but the romantic take on what makes long term relationships work (did I remember correctly?). But thanks for giving us a little window into your real life with Sean, Jay!

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  3. Willow Croft

    You all have a siren, and a curfew? Dang. On Sunday, I had to go out for groceries (yes, the stores are open) and I when I was driving home, I glanced over at the mall. The parking lot was jam-packed with vehicles. I couldn’t believe it. But, you know, we had a siren of our own. I was staying at home like I was supposed to, and I heard this noise. I was like, “Man, that’s one hell of a leafblower”. I asked the apartment complex staff later if that’s what the noise was, and they told me no. That it was a weekly test of the tornado alert siren. So, earthquakes, tornados, and seemingly non-existent COVID restrictions, oh my!

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  4. Liz A.

    You know, more places should do Hallmark movies. Imagine the possibilities. Have a hotel that isn’t doing business? Get Hallmark to film something there and promote the thing all over the place. Business problems solved.

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