June 06, 2008

wonderful copenhagen

Is there some sort of recent baby boom in Denmark? The sheer number of cyclists is really rivaled only by the number of little under-twos riding around in their little buggies. Seriously, so many wheels to dodge as a pedestrian.

Copenhagen is juuuuust slightly big to be a true walking city, so even though I slept long and well last night, I am beat again after a whole day of walking around. But far more coherent, and loving the friendly, easygoing feel to this city.

Of course, I realize I am getting a skewed view by the fact that I am getting the most perfect weather ever to be had in Perfectville, but still, Copenhagen is a fascinating mix of old architecture and brand-gleaming-modern, the population is very lively, and there are the picturesque canals everywhere that I am obsessed with, as you can tell from my pictures.

I went to the botanic gardens today,and then did my one-two of culture with the National Gallery and the National Museum (or Nationalmuseet. Hee! I love Danish.) The latter was really cool - everything from Viking displays (of course) to artifacts collected by kings over decades of world exploration (Greenland Eskimo celebration wear, a replica of a Korean house, Polynesian ceremonial robes...) to a Danish history in artifacts from 1660-2000. Really fascinating afternoon.

I also went to the little island off the city center, Christianhavn, and saw the "freetown" of Christiania, a hippie alternative-living enclave that's been living alternatively since the 70s. Walked down, I kid you not, Pusherstreet (subtle with their interests, huh?) where I Just Said No (actually, I wasn't offered at all. Apparently there's been crackdowns since a more conservative government came in.) and into the free living commune. Reminded myself that I am not a free living commune type, and was glad I was just visiting.

I learned some other things too, like the Danes are as gaga over H&M as I am, which makes it seem that much more authentic, and that this is the first country I've been to that really does not make peanut butter. Also, apparently, hot dogs on the street and schwerma are the national street foods, confusingly.

One more day in Denmark, and that's it. So sad!

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