February 19, 2017
As promised, I'm writing this post on the way back from Copenhagen. Hopefully this means that I'm getting my shit together and will start to write my posts closer to the time of me actually doing them—knowing me, there's no way that's happening. BUT I CAN BE OPTIMISTIC!
I arrived in Copenhagen around 8 o'clock at night on Friday. My train made it into the station, I took the stairs from the platform to the main station, and emerged into the bustling Copenhagen night. It's no secret that Europeans know how to party, but I found it absurd that no one was even partying yet. Of course, like Germans, the Danes don't even leave to party until 11 at the earliest (and a lot of times around 1:30am). I quickly made my way to a McDonald's in the train station for some free WiFi, got directions to Kristina's place, and made my way through the streets of Copenhagen.
The first thing I remember thinking about Copenhagen is how...umm, not diverse it was. EVERYONE I saw was white. I thought to myself, "Eh, it's a Scandinavian country" and went on my way though. Still, this impression never really seemed to subside.
I travelled down the street with my oversized backpack, crossed the bridge, and found my way to Kristina's. When I arrived, I was excitedly introduced to Kristina's DIS (Danish Institute for Study Abroad, or something like that) friends... I'm rather shy when first meeting people, so this was like torture to me. However, they were all really nice, so it was relatively painless. It was really cool getting to meet Brittany and Hannah, Kristina's roommates whom I have seen in all of her pictures. Kristina seems so happy, and they're undoubtedly a large part of that...SO THAT'S FREAKING AWESOME! Was that too aggressive? Eh, maybe.
Anyway, Grace (Heutel) and Sophie (you know who freaking Sophie is if you're reading this...if you don't, she'll be highly upset) came to visit at Kristina's, we played some games and talked a bit, and then we finally set out for town around 10-10:30pm (I don't really remember when exactly). This is when I got my first taste of night life in Copenhagen. It seemed so empty, but there was still lots going on. We first stopped in a place called The Jane which was this little underground bar that was pretty classy and kind of bourgey. Kristina paid 100Dkk for a passionfruit drink...and it was pretty tasty. But still probably not worth 100Dkk (or roughly 14$).
There wasn't a lot of sitting room in The Jane so we moved along to the next bar. We walked around quite a bit before Grace suggested we go to some lesbian bar (that I, unfortunately, do not know the name of). I, uh, wasn't sure if I'd be allowed in or not, but hey, drinks are drinks and dancing is dancing. SOOOO, we made our way to this bar and it was pretty nifty too. It was much smaller than the past bar, there was Foosball (or Table Football for my Europeans out there), and there were random people dancing. However, there still wasn't really a place to sit. So we didn't last long there...which is good because I felt like a fish out of water among the 99% female population in the bar. I definitely felt like a minority in those minutes.
The last bar we went to for the night was called Jolene. Grace lovingly referred to it as the "foggy bar", and she was mostly right. They had a fog machine constantly going, it was packed full with people, and lighting coordinated with dance tunes made for a fun night. I checked my coat in and we made our way to the center of all the action. We just had a good time and danced. There was this weird moment near the end where I thought that something rather inappropriate was going to happen when a girl kept feeling up some guys crotch in plain sight and got a little graphic, but it ended "not badly"...woo!
Sophie was getting tired a little after 1, so we headed home and saw Max and Jordan (maybe his name?) on the way back. Lots was happening in the meatpacking district that night, but we unfortunately left early. For the weekend Sophie was generous enough to let me stay with her (thank goodness) so we made our way to her little suburban apartment and went to bed.
The next morning I got to meet Sophie's host mom, which was super awesome. She was really knowledgeable about Danish culture and world events, and we had a pretty good time talking with her. She made us breakfast and Sophie and I probably stayed to talk a bit too long. We were originally planning on meeting up with Kristina around 10am on Saturday, but we didn't even all get together until almost 1pm. We talked wayyyy longer than expected. Still, it was lots of fun.
From here, Sophie, Kristina, and I all did lots of touristy stuff. We went to Paper Island, we saw the little mermaid statue, we went to the Queen's house (haha), and we got to see the colorful houses (which I heard were all the rage). Kristina and Sophie had to depart early though, so it seemed like just as quick as we started seeing things we ended! However, after seeing those two I hung out with Seymour and Ashmita, so I wasn't entirely alone. I walked around for a little bit alone (I know, feel bad for me), but then Seymour and I met up and went to a cafe (where we didn't buy anything because we expected them to take our order but we were actually supposed to go order at the counter and get a number...who knew? haha) before picking up Ashmita at Nørreport Station.
Ashmita, who is also studying in Copenhagen this semester, knew where all of the cool things to see were, so we tried quite a few places. Most notable, I feel, was the board game cafe, Bastard Café. It was unfortunately filled to the brim, so we couldn't go. So, we settled on an Irish pub called The Dubliner. We spent several hours here with two more Denison students, Will and Ceginna, who added a lot of fun to the afternoon. After 5 or so rounds, we left for some food before going out. But then I got a text from Sophie saying she would be going to bed at 11, so I should be at her house by then, so I had to leave them all to go to a karaoke bar by themselves. I went back to Kristina's for my backpack so I could get a shower and roughed my way through Copenhagen's extremely confusing and unclear (at least in my experience) transit system. It took me quite a bit longer than I was hoping to get to Sophie's apartment, but I made it a mere 20 minutes late! Sophie was tired, so I just got a shower and went to bed.
Sunday morning (this morning) I made up for how late we woke up on Saturday. I got up at 7:30am, got dressed, gave Soph a hug goodbye, missed the bus and had to wait 20 minutes for the next one...but I still got to Kristina's bright and early! Ha-ha! We made our way to a cafe, had some breakfast, and then went sightseeing a tiny bit more. We saw plenty of government buildings, jumped on trampolines, and even got to go to Christiania (a hippie community that is basically the Homestead on steroids). At the end, I grabbed my bag from Kristina's and we headed for the train station. One last coffee was had, some food was bought, and I boarded the train.
Sidenote because I didn't know where to put this: in Germany, I know a little bit of the language so it isn't terrible trying to survive in the city. In Denmark, I would have no freaking clue what people are saying. Thank goodness nearly all Danes speak English. Whilst in Denmark, I also noticed that I have been conditioned to say impulsive things like "thank you" in German all the time. Danes looked at me weird when someone would run into me and I'd say "entschuldigung!"...and by the end of the weekend Kristina and Sophie were sick of me texting them in German. Ich kann nicht anders!