|Location: Yding, Denmark|
|Local time: Tuesday, 1pm|
|Music: Osunlade - Paradigm (you gotta check this album out)|
Denmark. Home to Lego, the world's first national flag, Vikings, Carlsberg... and now me. Once again I'm back living in a Baltic Sea State, and brrr it's a bit chilly! The Danes are nice people though. And in general they speak very good English, which is good because my Danish still needs some work. (And I can't help but crack up every time I hear it on television - it's such a strange-sounding language!). And I have no complaints about Danish food.
Useless fact #274: Denmark is the world's top calorie-consuming country - 3,808 daily calories per person, compared with the world average of 2,745. And you thought it was America.
Christmas in Estonia was great - it was nice to be surrounded by people I've become very close to, rather than being alone somewhere in Egypt. On the 26th we took the overnight ferry from Tallinn to Stockholm, and then drove south through Sweden for about six hours, to the coastal city of Malmö, then across the bridge to Copenhagen (on the Danish island of Zealand) and then another three hours across the other island of Fyn and up the Danish mainland (Jutland, connected to the top of Germany), before finally arriving here in Yding at 9 o'clock at night. What a mission. The car was completely stuffed with luggage and food etc (it's well worth buying as much food as possible in Estonia, because it's roughly half the cost of what it is here in Denmark)... plus, my guitar was jammed into the middle of the car between us all, making it a little spatially-challenged. Still, this was a much better route than driving south through Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Germany.
There has been a lot of snow here in Denmark lately, and the Danes aren't really used to that. Half of them are still using summer tyres. We witnessed several accidents on the icy roads during our journey, including a slow-motion 360-degree spin right in front of us, resulting in the guy bouncing off the central barrier.
New Year's Eve involved a small gathering of perhaps 12 people, across the road at Reelika (Krista's sister) and Tarvo's house. We had great food and perhaps too much vodka! My Egyptian water pipe was bubbling away all night, and is quite the novelty here. (Tarvo has become a regular visitor these days, as he seems to have developed quite a liking for sheesha). As usually happens, my guitar was brought out at some point in the evening (although not by me), and the night turned into a bit of a sing-along (after I'd stopped, somebody produced a microphone and some raucous karaoke ensued).
So now I'm spending my days looking at various downloaded photography books and web sites, researching about digital post-processing, how to produce professional prints etc, as I'm still interested in trying to organise some sort of photography exhibition - although I'm not really sure where, how, or even if my work is good enough.
Anyway, that's about all to report for now. There's a trip to see a friend in Sweden planned for the near future, and I'd love to try and suss out how to get on a container ship (or similar) to Norway or Iceland, but, well, one thing at a time!...
Now I'm off to walk the 5km to Østbirk - the nearest town with a shop.
Update: Hmm, I've just been doing a little research and it would seem that at an average of about 120-euros per day, the container ship travel option is a little out of my price range. Silly me for thinking that this would be a cheaper alternative than passenger ferries.
"Have you been naughty or nice this year?"
The back yard in Estonia at Christmas time. Rather different to the summer Christmas's I'm used to.
The local 14th-century church in Märjamaa, looking purdy covered in snow.
The view from the house here in Yding ("ooding"), Denmark. Incidentally, that hill on the left leads to the highest point in the
entire country - Yding Skovhoej (173m above sea level), which we can see out the kitchen window. Exciting stuff.
(or, if you wanna get anal about it, you could say that actually the highest point in Denmark is the top of the bridge
that connects the country to Sweden. *yawn*)
My new home. The snow has since started to melt, but I think we'll be getting more some time soon.
Happy New Year everybody.
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