The Copenhagen

It’s hard to avoid having a good time in Copenhagen, especially if the sun’s shining.

I got off the train and it was hot. My bags seemed to swell with each new city but I was smiling. I turned to my phone but my wi-fi wizardry failed me, I couldn’t contact my man Tobias and I hadn’t made any plans of where to meet him.

I had a look at the metro map on the wall and found a train stop, Norrebro, yeah that rang a bell. I’d been in Denmark two and a half years earlier but my memory of the place had faded.

I wasn’t sure where I was going but I wasn’t nervous, I was excited. Oslo had been super interesting but it’s quite a conservative culture and the booze is so expensive. Denmark is the opposite and Tobias manages a bar. This is Tobias…

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I got off the train and I was in the middle of town and I kind of recognized the streets. I headed off into a mass of people. I took off my heavy winter coat as the sun was shining. The faces of the locals were warm from the sun and they were all very good-looking.

I still couldn’t find a wi-fi spot so I headed into the Apple store. I left my bags by the door and the guy kindly let me use their computers. I sent Tobias a Facebook message explaining where I was and soon got a reply. It turned out I was just around the corner from his bar – fortune favours the brave.

The Apple store guy gave me some directions but his English wasn’t very good, I couldn’t understand much of it but nodded politely. I took another look at the map and headed off. It was all good, I asked a few friendly locals along the way and got to Soupanatural. This is one of Denmarks finest bars but it is even more well know for its soups. “Don’t panic, it’s organic!” is their slogan and I was amazed to hear that all their raw materials are from organic farms, even their booze is organic (apparently the organic cachaca was a hard one to source.)

I rolled inside to a very welcoming site…

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We toasted to Denmark and to the sunshine and to traveling. We headed outside and we said cheers once more. There was lots of soup and more beers and it turned out this one of the best days of sunshine they’d have so far this year.

A few of Tobias’ friends dropped in. One of them had to make some quick repairs on his roller-skates. Pretty soon he was rolling fresh with new wheels and bearings.

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After a few more beers we headed for the bridge. It was the place to be on a sunny afternoon.

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Along the whole length of the bridge there were people leaning and sitting and chatting and laughing. All were drinking beers and some were smoking cigarettes. There were all types and there was some music and SO many bikes.

Copenhagen is the most bike friendly city in the world and everyone rides them. Old folks young folks, families, delivery guys, pretty girls and chubby guys and lawyers in suits. I love it and I’m going to devote a whole story to it soon…

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The next day it seemed we would have a car! But then it also turned out that Tobias needed to move house. It’s one of those things you’d think you could avoid while traveling, but then again, when you’re staying with friends everywhere you go, the age-old custom of ‘help-your-mate-move’ is even more important.

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We were extremely hungover and I hadn’t slept well as there’d been so many people in the bed. But I didn’t complain. We smoked cigs like tradies and we threw everything into the van.

NB Storage units are the same all over the world.

We got to the new house and it turned out to be at precisely the same time that his housemate was throwing a birthday lunch for his whole family. We made some awkward introductions, standing sweaty in the doorway. We fled and ate pizza.

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The next morning we went to Christiania. This place is a bizarre concept unique to Copenhagen, it is a walled suburb that has long been given over to squatters and vagabonds, artists and musos. There was a famous rule that you aren’t allowed to run in Christiania, it is said there is no need to rush here, that mellow vibes are more important. You also can’t take photos, but that’s because there are a lot of guys dealing weed. It is an oasis for the alternative lifestyle and it adds a lot of colour to the city.

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We also went there as we had been told that the Mogan Stedet restaurant had the best vegetarian food in town. It was good, we had dahl and roast vege’s.

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And then vegan chocolate cake for dessert, how do they do it! Amazing.

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We headed back to Soupanatural and had a beer in the sunshine. Tobias was starting to get increasingly agitated that his bar tender was late for work. It was strange because Tobias had always had a very relaxed approach to work; I was impressed at his commitment.

Finally the bartender arrived, he was breathing heavily as he apologized, Tobias gave him a stern look, “I don’t care, what I do care about is that we’ve been here for 20 minutes waiting for a Caipirinha, now get in there and make two of your best, and hurry up!”

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We sat in the sun and drank our Caipirinhas, they were very good, perfectly balanced. There weren’t many cars on the street, and those that did drive past did so furtively, almost apologetic at getting in the way of pedestrians and bike riders and people sitting in the road in the sun. It couldn’t have been more different to how drivers act in Australia.

In the afternoon we headed for a park. We loaded up the bike with supplies…

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We also picked up Jamie who had just arrived from the nearby Swedish town of Malmo.

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We fired up the BBQ, it was a little disposable unit that’s super popular in Europe.

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Man picnic.

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It got cold when the sun went down. I had my coat and my hat and the Euros shook their heads at my tropical blood and tanned skin.

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That night we went to a few different bars. To fancy bars with ridiculous beer selections and to cocktail bars and of course back to Soupanatural. We drank and we laughed and at 4am we went to a private club, it took a little while to get in but inside it was simple and sophisticated and surreal. The music was perfect.

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I eventually made it home; the sun was up well before I got to bed….

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