It’s incredible to me how fast life can change just in a week. Last Friday I went out to eat with my family in Texas (Tex-Mex restaurant of course) I couldn’t wrap my brain around the fact that just in a short week my life would completely change-boy was I right about that.
I could spend hours describing every detail of my flight or every step I’ve taken around Denmark, but instead I have decided to dedicate each post to a different theme or experience that I think will fit along with my theme of discovering what makes sustainable happiness this fall.
With that being said what has immediately stood out to me this past week is the people. Not just the people and the students in DIS, but the Danes too. Sitting on a sidewalk cafe it doesn’t take long to notice who is a Dane and who is an American. It could be as obvious as the style of clothes, their walk, or just by the way they carry themselves.
When Danes walk through crowds what I noticed was drastically different than Washington D.C was the way they will quietly move around if you are standing in their way. In the states big cities like New York you’ll often find people blaring their horns at you in cars, giving tourists dirty looks if they crowd the escalators in the metro (or god forbid stand to the left hand side of the metro in DC), or even pushing people on sidewalks if they are in their way. This type of behavior does not happen in Copenhagen.
What I find mentally exhausting about living in a city like Washington D.C. is the people are always in a hurry! Not to mention crosswalks and stops signs might as well not exist because no one obeys them. In Denmark, people actually stop at crosswalks when it’s red, and bikers obey the traffic rules just as well as cars. It’s going to be an ongoing lesson with me not having the urge to weave in and out through people and traffic like I find myself doing in DC, but slowly I am eager and excited to adapt to these small but unique Danish customs.
The Danes are an extraordinary group of people. In addition to being beautiful, blonde, and tall what I found is that they are just as interested to learn about the customs and traditions of the states just like Americans are interested to learn the traditions about the Danish culture. After having some discussions with a Dane last night in a neighboring town south from me, called Koge, I’ve seen that the Danes are incredibly humble when they are fortunate to have so much. It is a very wealthy country, and with the very high taxes the Danish government supplies so much of the expenses like health care and education which in return contribute to the very low percentage of homelessness and poverty that exists in the country. Already I can see how passionate the Danes are in investing in their future. Whether that may be in the form of solar power, education, or renewable resources-the Danes see the future definitely.
I promise in the blogs to follow I’ll go into every detail about the incredible food, unique fashion, and beautiful architecture that makes up this wonderful city that I already know will be so hard to leave come December.