|Just Another Year (PS)|
|Written by Iceland Review|
|Wednesday, 21 December 2011 11:00|
A couple of years ago, I was selected as one of ten photographers to document UNESCO World Heritage Sites. I did not have any preferences as to where to go, except one: I wanted to go to the DPRK.
But I did not go.
I went to other places instead, like Timbuktu, Lima, Kiev, Copenhagen, Djenné, Karlskrona, Dakar, Dogon and Þingvellir.
Later I found out that like me all the photographers said they didn’t want to go to any specific location except they all had the same preference, the DPRK.
The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Better know as North Korea.
And now, last Saturday morning, its leader Kim Jong-il died on a train of a heart attack caused by overwork and stress.
In a closed country.
Yet in the 51 hours from the apparent time of Mr. Kim’s death and until the official announcement of it, South Korean officials appeared to detect nothing unusual.
The failure to pick up signs of turmoil is especially disconcerting for people in South Korea. South Korea’s capital, Seoul, is only 35 miles/50 kilometers from the North Korean border.
The great leader’s successor is his 28-year-old son Kim Jong-un.
Can he or does he want to change this strange country of 23 million people?
The Arab Spring is the biggest and most positive news in 2011.
Tunisia, Libya and Egypt are now kind of free. Syria will be next.
Another Mediterranean nation, Greece, has held the Euro hostage.
And the Euro crisis will spread out, west to Italy, Spain and Portugal.
It has the potential to be dangerous but it won’t.
And this is the year Osama bin Laden and Anwar al-Awlaki were killed.
The US military left Iraq after nine years of occupation and here in Iceland we had a brief volcanic eruption in Grímsvötn in late May.
Nothing else happened in the republic.
Other than we had the best crop of music in years:
Mugison with Haglél, selling 30,000 copies in three months (that would be 30 million at per capita ratio in the US) and Sóley Stefánsdóttir, LayLow and GusGus all released five-star albums.
And two great movies by two young directors, Eldfjall (Volcano) by Rúnar Rúnarsson and Á annan veg (Either Way) by Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurðsson, premiered.
Nothing else happened in the year 2011.
Reykjavík is warm.
If you go around the globe and look at other cities at the same latitude as Reykjavík, +64° degrees north, the forecast for today at noon, local time, is as follows:
Yakutsk, Sakha, Russia -42°C/-44°F
|Last Updated on Wednesday, 21 December 2011 23:38|