[Den]Marks the Spot

Copenhagen, Denmark

My days abroad have been playing tricks on my sense of time.

I feel both like I have lived an entire lifetime here in Sweden, and like I’ve woken up from just a five-minute nap to the alarming talk of mid-terms.

Classes are starting to speed up and we are all starting to dive deeper into our lessons.

A funny thing to complain about, because it’s not even really a complaint:

I can’t keep track of which lesson belongs to which class. Many of the lessons, particularly in my Psychology of Loneliness and Positive Psychology classes are so deeply intertwined, that I jumble them up constantly. It’s been fun to gain a dual perspective on overlapping psychological theories of well-being.

With mid-term research papers and projects creeping up just before my spring break, I did what any good procrastinator does — leave the country and pretend it’s not happening!

Not to worry, I play chicken with deadlines fairly well.

This was actually my first weekend trip (not counting field studies/trips).

Regarding international travel, I think that there is this sort of pressure when studying abroad that sounds something like: “I’m here. I have to take full advantage of this. Each weekend must be spent in a new country, otherwise I’ve wasted precious opportunities.”

It’s easy to get lost in that mentality and to feel guilty for not doing something extravagant at every waking moment.

I think it’s important to remember that it’s okay to take it easy, that I’m living on the bank account of a college student, and that there is the entire continent of Europe (let alone an entire world) that I long to explore, but that those places aren’t going anywhere. I have a lifetime’s worth of time to wander.

It’s hard to enjoy something in a hurry. Why not take your time?

Nyuhaven’s picture-perfect canal

Nyhavn which was built under the reign of King Christian V, is a 17th-century canal and entertainment district in Copenhagen. The animated and post-card-like view of the waterfront’s quaint shops makes it easy to happily shrug off the idea of paying 33 DKK (approximately 5 USD) for a water with your lunch.

Were you really in Denmark if you didn’t get waffle sticks and take a picture in front of the Danish flag?
A peek at the Church of Our Saviour, a baroque church in Copenhagen
Shaynan quite literally living life on the edge…
Though far from resembling Paris’ Pont des Arts (the famous ‘love lock’ bridge), over the years, couples have taken to preserving the idea in Nyuhavn

Fristaden Christiania, also known as Freetown (or hippie-town) Christiania, is Copenhagen’s alternative neighborhood. It is an autonomous society within Copenhagen’s society that has its own rules and regs independent of the Danish government. Since its development in the early 1970s, the commune and former military base has been somewhat of a hotly debated topic.

This is largely because of the open cannabis trade happening in Christiania’s well-known “Green Light District,” which is otherwise illegal in Denmark.

The blend of homemade houses, local shops, art galleries, music venues, and water-side views makes for great photo ops and has generated a great deal of international tourism.

Graffiti art in Christiania with skateboard dragon scales
Looks fancy, right? Magasin Du Nord is a Danish chain of department stores
Shaynan and Sam after they kicked all of the adorable little kids off of the sidewalk trampolines (only kidding….)

Though the trip was wonderful, I think that leaving Sweden make me extra grateful to come back to it.

Happy to be home.

Snuggles in our sweet Airbnb

One of the few times when my word of the week won’t be in Swedish:

hygge

[hue-gah] (n.)

A quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being (regarded as a defining characteristic of Danish culture).

A complete absence of frustrations or emotional overwhelm, often enjoyed with good company, good food and drinks, warm blankets, and candlelight.

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