One of the first phrases I picked up here in Iceland—and one which I’m sure I’ve thrown about wild abandon on this blog—is “þetta reddast,” or, “it will work out.” This persistent optimism in the face of great trials (a nation-wide economic collapse, for instance) and minor irritations (schedule conflicts, missed deadlines, etc.) may seem a bit blithe to the outside observer, particularly one who really likes to plan ahead. But, myself being something of a compulsive contingency-planner, I personally find this phrase to often be a good reminder to relax and stop worrying about things that you simply can’t do anything about in the present moment. Why waste all that energy worrying when it will probably work out? Because one way or another, things frequently do (or perhaps adjust themselves into new and different, but equally workable plans).
I am not doing a great job of explaining this, but that’s okay—I don’t have to! Because Auður Ösp of the very informative I Heart Reykjavík website has started a new mini-podcast in which she will explain a new Icelandic phrase each month. And the first phrase is….Þetta Reddast.
If you don’t do anything after the first mini-podcast ends, you’ll also hear another (three minute) podcast of hers in which she teaches you how to say important everyday Icelandic phrases like “one with everything” (referring to pylsur, of course) and “one large beer (please).” There is also a link on the page I linked to above for her monthly newsletter which is chock-full of fun things to do around Reykjavík each month.