The light peeks through the window at the buried basement. The chandelier shakes as the woman upstairs marches front and back, as a reminder of her existence. Her footsteps approach and she yells: “Would you like an ice-cream darling?” I drag myself up the stairs and accept her invitation with a faint smile.
I plant myself in front of the symbol of unification with my parents and we watch a man in a carbon black suit with a steep back and the mouth wide open say: “Power plant construction is a powerful counterbalance to the enormous economic impact the pandemic has had”. Another one (also wearing suits) disagrees, points out the environmental impact and then the discussions lead back to the economy. I roll my eyes while munching on strawberries, liquorice and chocolate while the ice cream melts on my tongue. Next I shake my head at those environmental slacks who somehow intend to rid the world of pollution. But a shiver creeps down my spine as the foam container for the ice cream reminds me of my part in destroying the earth.”Why didn’t you bring the reusable container?” I shout at my poor mother. “Uhh, sorry” she rigidly replies, so I apologise and rush down to the basement to look for solutions.
On the outside I look and am eco-friendly (I think many of my followers would consider me living the exemplary lifestyle). I promise myself this is my last day as an eco-slack.
But first I intend to cycle down to the beach, excessively pick some Icelandic seaweed and catch fish to freeze or dry so it will last the winter. Then I also need to buy a freezer, preferably an old, used one I hope to find on Facebook. I would also fill it with all the ‘last look’ vegetables and fruits I find in Krónan, for 99 ISK each. The food would last me through the winter, until I can set up my own vegetable garden.
I look at the books on my night desk, feeling optimistic. Those books have been a niche in my New Year’s resolutions for years but have never been opened. I will thread through all of them and then reuse the pages for my own fiction. Eventually I will disappear from social media, get rid of my smartphone, practice yoga and become a meditation guru. Worldly goods will become unnecessary. I can stop scanning real estate sites and finally accept my self declared residence at my parents’ basement. Journalists will most likely flock to the basement to cover my unique contribution to the environment, which will hopefully lead more people to following my advice, cars will fade away from the streets of Reykjavík and aluminium plants will be closed.
I begin to rearrange my bunker, make space for the freezer. My last look on the phone for now will be to find that used freezer I’m missing. I open Facebook but when I’m about to open the search window my attention scatters to an ad from Kringlan: “AMAZING DEALS” and “The last day of our sale is on!”
With one swipe I’ve raised my allowance on the credit card, filled the tank with gasoline and I find myself standing on Stjörnutorg holding countless shopping bags in my arms.