Pálmi and Dilly’s house, Hjari, is exactly as advertised—expertly and lovingly restored, charming and comfortable in a nostalgic way that will, almost literally, take you back to the 1950s era of Westfjords. The pleasures of this place are multiple—while the house is adorable from top to bottom, it is also functional in all aspects. Hjari’s kitchen is open plan, fully stocked and a fun place to make and serve local specialties (mainly fish and lamb, but the two food markets are fully sufficient for regular culinary needs). The beds are all comfortable, the views from virtually every window both serene and spectacular. The bathroom is euro style with heated floor, superhot shower and washing machine. The backyard is a sweep of green prefacing a wide vista of the Isafjordurjup and the Hornstradir Nature Reserve beyond; the leeward side of the two-story house is a small swatch of the softest grass in the world, a fine location to soak up the sun (when it’s available!) and meditate on the stark mountains that frame the small village of Bolungarvik, the main street, full-service restaurant (Einershúsið has an excellent chef) and working wharf of which are conveniently located a five minute walk away. Local attractions include a Recreation Center with an indoor swimming pool, outdoor hot tubs, a water slide and (on weekends) a sauna. A small, but ingenious self-serve nine hole golf track is a five minute drive from the house and on the River Osar (which offers some salmon and trout fishing—bring your own clubs and rod and reel). The reconstructed, antique fishing village of Osvar is pretty much the only conventional tourist attraction of note here, but there are plenty of destinations for pleasant strolls nearby and driving day trips abound in the area—we especially liked the isolated farming village of Skalavik, 12K of bad road from B’vik but dramatic, (almost ethereal) and the setting for one of the novels of Nobel-prize winning Icelandic author Haldor Laxness. Indeed, my wife and I came here in order for me to draft my own third novel—we could not have dreamed up a better place to the meet the needs of us both—mine artistic, hers meditative. Hjari, the house, is an ideal location for artistic work, with regular cable TV and internet connections but otherwise minimal distractions and an enviable “writer’s study” with an Arctic sea view and plenty of quiet all around. Bolungarvikers are conventionally reticent, but the village has accepted my wife and I in a very generous way during our extended stay—my wife teaches a yoga class at the Rec Center, the local knitters made me a special-order (Skull’n’Bones motif!) sweater and the several friends we’ve made here are ideal neighbors—cordial, intelligent people who have invited us to share in the village life and local excursions (elf circle and whale-watching!), but mostly just leave us alone. Pálmi and Dilly are excellent hosts and we look forward to our next stay at Hjari.