October 18, 2014
The Enjoy Centre
St. Albert, Alberta, Canada
Eliza Reid is co-founder of the Iceland Writers Retreat, an annual series of writing workshops and cultural tours in Iceland, the land of the sagas. A native of Ottawa, she has run her own business in Iceland for over a decade. Her projects mostly involve writing and editing (usually about travel and food), but have also included organizing a conference for WWII vets and selling textbooks to schools.
To keep her on her toes, Eliza has one adult step-daughter, Rut, and four children: Duncan (7), Donald (5), Saethor (3) and Edda Margrét (1). (A toast to a future with many sons made by some Tajik hosts in Samarkand, Uzbekistan years ago seems to have been remarkably effective.)
She has made Reykjavik, Iceland her home since 2003. Her husband, Gudni Jóhannesson, is an Icelandic historian. They met in graduate school in England. Their names were drawn together on a blind date as part of a fundraiser — and the rest is history!
Eliza has lived in Iceland for 11 years. My last name (Reid) means “angry” in Icelandic (reið).
She likes to travel to “off-the-beaten” track places, including Timbuktu, Tashkent, Ulaan Baatar, Tirana, and Minsk (but I’ve yet to step foot in Calgary, Florida, Washington DC, or anywhere south of the equator!).
She loves all kinds of food and dining culture, but despite this and growing up on a hobby farm, she don’t like eggs!
Her children were born in 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013. Confession: On her first birthday, there was no present for my youngest — though she did manage a cake and candle.