Copenhagen: One Week Observations

It’s hard to believe I’ve been here a week already!  I actually know my way around the city, have managed to not reveal my American status to people on the bus, and, most importantly, have not yet starved to death.

Today we did a scavenger hunt in our suburb of Brønshøj.  It’s not the nicest area in Copenhagen, but the houses are nice, and there are several pretty lakes around here as well.  I need to wander around a little more when I have free time, because until today I’d barely spent any time outside of our main road!  I also tried a chocolate cupcake from our local bakery.  America could learn a few things from their bakeries over here, because it was awesome.

A few thoughts on culture, now that I’ve been here enough to observe some of it:

1. Bikers are scary.  I worry more about them than cars.  Getting on and off the bus puts you right in the bike lane, which can be scary.  The whole infrastructure is designed so well, with the bike lanes kept separate from the street so they don’t have to worry about cars.  And, there is the added side effect that pretty much everyone in this country seems to be in awesome shape.  Just do everything possible to stay out of their way.

2.  Strangers don’t talk to you on the street.  After a summer of random people trying to engage me in conversation in Denver, it’s incredibly refreshing that in a week of walking around here, I have not been asked for money once, and my only interactions on the street have been to ask for (or give!) directions.  Actually, one person did come up to my group of friends on Strøget, from UNICEF.  But, he simply told us about their mission and told us to have a good day instead of trying to pressure us to give money to their organization.  Pretty much the entire time he was talking I was waiting for him to tell us we should donate, but it never happened.  Thank you, Danish UNICEF, for not being obnoxious to everyone and simply talking about the good work you do.

3. There are a lot of flower shops here.  I guess people must buy a lot more flowers here than they do in the US.

That’s all I have for now.  Tomorrow begins the first full week of classes.  Although “full week” might be a stretch…Not having work or any of my normal extracurriculars means I have SO MUCH free time that I’m not used to.  It’ll be nice to have more chances to explore.

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