Friday, July 4

birthday trip through Copenhagen

celebrating the birthday of my guy today with a visit from his teenage nephew, a trip to Christiania with a picnic and a climb up into the Our Saviour Church golden tower - and hopefully a swim at Bryggen this afternoon and an outdoor jazz concert on Balder's Plads this evening with great friends and red wine! Not bad, huh?

these cinnamon swirly buns - kanelsnurrer in Danish - are my newest, lasting guilty pleasure. Recently learned that the baker, which I bike past on my way home from work, have the cinnamon buns freshly baked, warm and ready (for me) at the exact moment that I pass by ...on a 15 minute detour... yeah.

finally, I would like to note that the Danish flags are a Danish birthday tradition. Like presents. Or decorations. Or... I don't know, don't you do strange things for the sake of tradition?


Sunday, June 8

the insect forest

significantly creepy-crawly name for little magic spot on Kalvebod Fælled on the south of Amager in Copenhagen. Close to this otherworldly green oasis among charred tree trunks are three more little special spots, among others a stranded ark. Yep. Bring kids or playfulness. Do not let that towel confuse you with the promise of a beach close by - I was simply cold and expecting a swim at my kayaking club on Holmen in central Copenhagen later that day. Also worth a visit, though :)

Tuesday, May 6

travel diary: London

getting out of central London - except for a trip to The Hummingbird Bakery and The Topshop fast leaving us feeling like retail zombies - is a treat for those of us needing a vacation from our rolling thoughts.

on this trip, I was lucky enough to be introduced to and fall in absolute love with the northeast neighborhood, Stoke Newington. Do not in any way miss the ancient and magic Abney Park Cemetery... greenness defined! Or the people watching on the grass along with something incredibly tasty from the Broadway Market, which is open on Saturdays and so so delicious to be a part of. Not to mention bringing a bottle of self-tapped wine from the sweet guys at Borough Wines to graze around in the sun and appreciate the view out of London at the Hackney Marshes.

speaking of delicious, we were indescribably lucky to plonk ourselves exhausted onto those BEAUtiful chairs at south american café and restaurant and home-of-incredibly-nice-people-and-guitar-music-and-salsa-dancing Candela Clapton! Ceviche and nachos and fresh salmon and inspiringly crafted cocktails and deserts and... damn. I get exhausted and hungry just considering getting started on describing the everchanging brunch menu at 3Course to you.

Oh, and finally for a dose of free culture, visit The Photographers' Gallery in Soho for impressively well curated small exhibitions.

Any questions, let me know and I will ask my local consultant :)

Sunday, April 13

spending time on things

looking at my growing mental (and physical) weekend to do list, it suddenly hit me how much time I spend on things

- gathering things (shopping, trading, giving, receiving, printing...
- making room for things (tidying, organising, re-decorating, back-up'ing...
- taking care of current things (washing, cleaning, repairing, updating...
- getting rid of unwanted things (selling, throwing out, recycling, deleting, burning or otherwise destroying...
- planning wanted things (window shopping, online browsing, wish listing...
- finding out if I have money for things (checking bank account, calculating ahead...
- getting money for things (filling forms, collecting pay, working on future job opportunities...

what did you do today that does not fall under one of these categories?
I think I'd like to do more of that stuff.

Saturday, April 12

the study of parties

Mrs Dalloway's Party essays by Virginia Woolf collected by Stella McNichol / The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald / Movie by Baz Luhrman,

there's something going on in my life that has made me start studying parties, I recently realised. This past year, I've been reading The Great Gatsby. Among the other stuff I read, this one is a particular work in progress, because of the language. Oh, the language! I have to be in a receptive mood to open that book. Possibly because I feel as if I owe it to Fitzgerald to be in the right frame of mind to appreciate all… the… work, he put into this piece. The thoughtfulness of the words chosen for the sentences can be so exquisitely delicious that one sentence can deserve being read, read and read again. What really draws the process out, is when a sentence deserves that I close the book... Such as the so strikingly captured, basically human, glimpse-like thought process of realising that all other people in the world live different lives from your own, while you are a part and not a part of it all: 

'I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life'
/Nick Carraway in The Great Gatsby

but returning to the study of parties, I want to say that I am noticing how the span of different mixtures that parties can be, brings out very different personality traits in people. Brings out the wild and the quiet and the honest. Which the clever collection of Virginia Woolf essays surrounding one specific occasion - Mrs Dalloway's Party - helped me begin to notice, when I am among people.

this is not only fascinating as a step in my own perception of the puzzle that is the world, it is also interesting for my work as an experience designer. The study of the puzzle pieces of parties. How to encourage certain sides of people to appear at certain occations. Like recently, after a great birthday party of a friend, a few of the same people met for dinner, and the connection among us was suddenly what I would describe as magic. Because of the party a few nights before? Because of the particular mixture of that particular evening?

what I essentially want to say is that:
parties say a lot about people. These two books and the movie are great lenses to use for looking closer at people. I like people.

'I like large parties. They're so intimate. At small parties, there isn't any intimacy.'
/Jordan Baker in The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald  

Sunday, March 30

escaping the perfectionist

a few times while travelling, I experienced how now feels. For me, it is a sense of chilling connection to everything around me that I can observe, fascinated, for a little while. Everything may not be good, but everything is as it is supposed to be… I am where I am supposed to be. It is not about being in the perfect place, because I remember experiencing this alone in a hammock in tiny Chichiriviche and on a crowded bus ride from Hanauma Bay with a friend. Rather, it is about presence.

Caribbean coast towns in Venezuela and snorkeling spots in Hawaii will most likely sound like the pretty perfect places to feel great. But honestly, looking back at these travels, I remember feeling distracted and lonely most of the time. Ungrateful for the indescribable luxury of travelling and most often unable to appreciate the now.

the perfectionist in me has worked towards top grades and personal optimisation, it helps me achieve goals and solve problems. But the striving, the checked to-do lists and self surveillance have driven me to travel to the other side of the planet to escape myself.

the thought behind this blog was to build something graspable reminding me to live where I am. And the hope of inspiring someone, who needs it. It may sound simple, but for me living where I am has been and still can be really challenging.
It is a process, a travel home.

Wednesday, March 12

furesø lake

finally found something resembling the nature of my childhood a little bit closer to where I actually live now! Just north of Copenhagen, in the shape of the Furesø Lake. It means so much to me, having the sea and beaches and deep forests and vast lakes be part of my everyday life. Now if only I could move my friends and all the big city opportunities out there… Like the opportunity to buy milk at four in the morning. 

take an S train to Farum or Holte station, bring your bike for free and bike the rest of the way to the lake. At different spots around the lake, there are swimming docks, restaurants, a kayaking club, boat tours and boat rental. At this time of year, I was simply exited about the clarity of the water and the mist rising.

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