Imagine the delight of those tourists about to set off on a whale watching expedition yesterday when a humpback whale measuring 8-10 metres came swimming into the harbour here in Reykjavík [just a 15 minute walk from my place]. It hung around for ages, before finding its way out again on its own.

Whales are not an uncommon sight offshore in other parts of Iceland, but it’s very rare to spot one actually in the capital. The last time one swam into the harbour was about ten years ago – that whale died, as it was unable to find its way back out and rescue efforts failed. Usually when whales swim into shallow waters they get disoriented and more often than not stranded, after which they die as a result of their own body weight.

But enough of that. Up next:

Ok. I have a wee problem with memes. They make me squeamish. I think it’s something to do with feeling presumptuous for assuming that people care. [After all, they’re not called me-me’s for nothing, right?] I mean, is it really interesting to anyone else to know what book I would save from a burning fire? Isn’t it just hopelessly boring to know what book I’d take to a desert island, and why?

Anyway. I have to admit they’re also kind of fun. For me-me. Not to mention thought provoking. So here goes:

1. You’re stuck inside Fahrenheit 451, which book do you want to be saved?

The New Testament.

2. Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?

No. Unless you count Colin Firth as Mr Darcy in the BBC production of Pride and Prejudice [swoon]. Typically I only have crushes on rock stars and the occasional actor.

3. The last book you purchased?

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon.

4. What are you currently reading?

Runaway, a collection of short stories by Alice Munro. She’s such a talented writer and the stories are gripping, even if every single one has left me with slight feeling of despondency.

5. Five books you would take to a desert island?

(1) The Bible. The Old Testament has been on my to-read list for years and I figure I need lots of free time to actually get around to it.

(2) Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë. Because it’s my favourite novel of all time, ever.

(3) The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy. Because it’s my very favourite contemporary novel. She has the most miraculous way with language – her prose is enthralling and deeply moving. It’s the only book in recent history that has made me cry – not once but twice. [It’s also the only novel in recent history I’ve read twice].

(4) The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. An amazing book for discovering and re-covering your creativity.

(5) Hope for Today. Daily readings of the Al-Anon fellowship. Because if I was stuck on a desert island I’d need all the hope I could get.

I’m not going to tag anyone with this because that would make me more squeamish still. Instead I’m going to extend an open invitation to anyone who read this to please help yourself. And to let me know if you do so I can read your answers.

Has been gorgeous so far today. I woke up just before six this morning to brilliant sunshine. That lasted until just past noon, but now it’s clouded over and about a half hour ago there were a few drops of rain. AAH’s gone off to the neighbourhood open-air pool with her friend; I’m about to go for a run and then perhaps to the pool afterwards for a soak in the hot tub. Meanwhile, poor EPI has to spend the whole weekend at work. Boo. Temps currently 10°C. Daybreak was at 04.22 and nightfall set for 22.32.

* It’s not really Jamie’s. She just tagged me with it.