10 out of 16 weeks. Isn’t that insane? I never know what day of the week it is anymore. I’d like to say school is getting more rigorous as the term is coming to an end, but it’s not. I am still traveling like a mad man, though. Oh and I’m 21 now. When did that happen?
I spent the weekend in Scandinavia. Honestly, I was a little nervous about traveling alone. However, it was probably the best decision I’ve made thus far. I saw exactly what I wanted at my own pace, and it surprisingly enjoyable. I made friends with some Hungarians and Brits from my hostel and we went out both nights together. It was perfect. Have you ever heard the phrase “drink like a Dane”? Well, there’s some truth to that. To be clear: a hostel does not provide ideal sleeping conditions.
Copenhagen is now number two out of all cities I’ve visited. (My favorite is still Amsterdam.) It’s immaculately clean and visually stunning. I mean this in two ways. Obviously people dress perfectly, but moreover it is architecturally beautiful. New buildings compliment the older buildings and add to the character of the city; understated elegance. Every park and market was gorgeous in its own way. I again can’t speak highly enough about this place. Lastly, Amsterdam and Copenhagen compete annually as the most bikeable city in the world. There are clear lanes for cars, bikes and pedestrians on all streets like Amsterdam but significantly fewer people—to the point where you aren’t scared for your life when biking.
Denmark is the the happiest country in the world. It shows. The ferry drivers to the servers, everyone was so pleasant and helpful, more than any other city. People seemed genuinely happy even if there was only 6.5 hours of daylight. This was also the first weekend that holiday lights were illuminated and Christmas beer is available, which was a special treat. This probably added to everyone’s level of cheer. (Shocking: Christmas colors are blue and white, no red or green anywhere.)
I always feel obligated to go to a couple museums where ever I am. This time it was the National Museum (free) which houses the “White Bus Exhibit.” It walks you through the timeline of Nazi occupied Denmark during WWII, which was very unique. Under 3,000 Jews or political prisoners were taken to concentration camps in mainland Europe. Normal life for the most part continued in Denmark and the Jewish population was never segregated from society. Denmark was also allowed to send supplies and packages to their citizens in concentrations camps-even allowed to pick up people in white busses during the war. The exhibit didn’t explain why Denmark got special treatment other than it due to its inconvenient location.
Friday I’m off to Budapest for the weekend to visit Josh and see my new friends from this past weekend. I come home late Sunday and leave again Thursday morning for Brussels and Bruges. I have enough time to go to class, do laundry and sleep.
Finally, follow this think so all of my pictures. I think I took the best photos in Copenhagen. Mark in Europe
Sending my love to you all