Cassidy and I saw Diplo on the Wednesday night before I headed to Copenhagen, giving me only a few hours of sleep before catching the 6:20am train. I slept most of the five-hour ride, which I assume was beautiful, and got into my hostel around noon.
I couldn’t check in until 2, so I grabbed a veggie burger and walked around the Assistens Cemetery, where Hans Christian Anderson is buried. The cemetery is more of a local park than anything, with young (shirtless…) fathers lying on blankets with their babies and couples sharing benches.
I headed back to the hostel and took a well-needed nap on the top of a three-story bunk before waking up to a new girl named Betsy in the bunk below talking to one of our roommates across the room. I heard her say she was from the states, so I rolled over and asked her where she was from: Maryland – only an hour outside of DC. We talked for 20 minutes before I actually got out of bed and we saw what each other looked like.
Three 18-year-old English girls who just finished their A-levels came into the room after a short while, and the five of us grabbed a bite to eat before heading to Christiania, which is kind of a free town within Copenhagen. There’s a marijuana market there, lots of artwork, bars, outdoor seating and a large warehouse where a couple hundred people live. We had beers by a lake there and enjoyed the late sunlight until 10:30 before heading back.
At the hostel, we met another group of seven Brits interrailing after their A-levels, as well as an American named Maxine, and chatted with them for a while before going on a walk. Most of them intended on going out, but we mostly just wanted to explore.
Betsy and I spent pretty much all of our time together, though I took a walking tour by myself. We went to the Danish National Museum and a theme park called Tivoli, where we ran into an Australian girl who took a bike tour with me in Stockholm. We rode a roller coaster there after exploring a bit and then grabbed dinner. We went back to the hostel and spent some more time with the large group of British students.
The next day, Betsy and I went to a really nice food market, where I had a Smorrebrod, which is a traditional Danish open sandwich. Mine had mackerel on it and was by far the best thing I ate in Copenhagen. We also got this Jersey cow ice cream on a stick that was fabulous – mine was sea salt caramel and pumpkin seed and hers was some kind of honey oat flavored. After the food market, we headed to the National Gallery, which had a really nice modern collection.
Two years ago, my friend and I were travelling in Berlin when we met two English-speaking girls – Sisi from Copenhagen and Chloe from Oxford – and ended up spending an evening and a lunch with them. They were both au pairing and had met only a couple months before. Anyway, I told Sisi I was in town and she met up with us at the gallery.
It was pretty wild seeing Sisi after such a brief meeting two years ago and catching up on everything. Chloe still lives in Berlin, and the two of them have stayed good friends since we met them. Sisi is back in Copenhagen studying, where the government pays students to go to school. We spent a few hours in the Botanical Gardens, walking around and at a café in Norrebro, the neighborhood our hostel was in and where Sisi lived.
There’s something really special about international friends – regardless of how short of a time you meet them or where you are in your life, it’s always nice to catch up and see them when you are in the same place. There’s this strange openness about these friendships because you know that you having ever connected was by such a slim chance and that the friendships may be just for a day or two where your paths cross. You may never see these people again, but if you do it’s always interesting and welcomed.
After grabbing drinks at the café, we said our goodbyes (maybe to one day see each other again, who knows where) and Betsy and I headed back to the hostel. The other American girl we met, Maxine, and I left to see a DJ set by Dillon Francis and Flosstradamus. The show was sick – I moshed for the first time, though it was more of a toned down mosh pit than others – and we left with a new Danish friend to grab some more drinks.
As usual when I have to travel these days, I got almost no sleep before having to get up at 5am to head to the airport for Norway, where I currently sitting on the shore of a fjord sipping on some coffee. Will get back to you on that one.