SVV and I are in the throes of a quadruple back-up of our seven computers (yes, excessive), and in the process I came across a few random (low-res) Copenhagen files each of us took with our point-and-shoots when we lived over in Denmark that I hadn’t seen, well, since we lived in Denmark.
It’s such a shame we weren’t able to spend more time in what I consider one of Europe’s most cosmopolitan capitals. We lived just a three-hour train ride away on the Jutland Peninsula, in the second biggest city of Aarhus, but if you’ve never been to Denmark, you would have been blown away by the exorbitant prices. When we lived there, it was something like $90 to take the train to Copenhagen—each way. Given that SVV and I were students sharing a nine-square-meter, top-floor room with slanted ceilings, we hardly had that kind of excess money just lying around.
And so, I really only went to Copenhagen three times: two long weekends for class projects and one week at the end of my stay to visit my bestie Megan from Tennessee, who had gotten a job there for the summer.
That year was a particularly cold, harsh, tempestuous year in Denmark. The skies pretty much looked like this for six months straight, which in my opinion only served to further enhance the city’s haunting beauty.
The Danes are known for many things, but design and architecture are at the top of that list. I won’t claim to know the first thing about either (despite my days working at a fashion magazine, heh), but I will say I find the aesthetic of the houses and churches, monuments and government buildings quite pleasing.
Furthermore, many of Copenhagen’s roofs are an odd mint green hue you don’t often see on buildings in other cities due to the copper used to make them. I can imagine that must create a pretty interesting aerial view.
SVV and I would brave the damp chill and ever-present drizzle to wander the slick city streets with our classmates and even dared to venture over into Christiania, an autonomous neighborhood (or commune) that’s akin to San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district on meth.
I went back with Megan later that summer when the sun was out and the sky was clear, and it was a different experience entirely (i.e. not nearly as eerie, save the slightly jarring and Satanic graffiti).
This was also during my “trial period” with SVV—i.e. we were living together by fate as “friends,” yet I was still trying to win him over with my Southern charm much to his futile resistance—so I have fond memories of late night flirtations in dimly lit bars.
I even burst into flames, quite literally, in one such dive bar while we were out on the town in Copenhagen with a handful of (male) friends, playing a game of dice that is a popular bar tradition in Copenhagen. The pills of my Gap sweater were to blame, and as blue-hot fires danced up my arm and visions of my hair (which never saw a hair dryer that year and, thus, was often tempered by flammable gel) going up in a puff of smoke raced through my mind. The boys, of course, had one solution: “QUICK! TAKE OFF YOUR SWEATER!” And so I did, and the fire was put out and my hair was saved and my sweater came out unscathed. (Only my pride was singed.)
Kristin Luna: The Girl Who Caught Fire. Katniss Everdeen’s got nothing on me.