International blog: Frances in Copenhagen – potatoes & pastries

— 06.11.15

by Simon Spode

So the ‘Kartoffelferie’ (meaning ‘potato holiday’ – weirdly, what the Danes call their reading week) has just ended and now I am back to class with a new module to start, Sports Economics, which I have been really looking forward to.

The Danish system works in quarters, some modules last all semester and some only half of it, which means that I had to do my first exam last week… it was a 48hr case study which I had to research and write a project on which I confess was stressful and can only be described as sort of an amalgamation of an exam and assignment at Sheffield.

However, now I am free-ish and seized the opportunity in the last week to visit both Tivoli, the theme park in the centre of Copenhagen, and Helsingør, home to the castle where Shakespeare’s Hamlet is set (above). Tivoli, especially, was amazing, decked out in Halloween decorations and lit up at night, where a few friends and I enjoyed some mulled wine to get in the autumn/winter spirit and crêpes, which aren’t exactly Danish but were delicious all the same! Then we power cycled home because it was getting cold and most of us were losing feeling in our toes, where I decided on a new motto for Copenhagen, “everyday is leg day” because I could barely walk the following day. I believe now I can answer the eternal question as to how Danes eat so many pastries and still stay slim!

Overall after being out here in Copenhagen for a few months now, I can happily say that it is very different to England but oddly I am enjoying the differences. Recently I was chatting to a lady on the metro who I thought described it really well, “it’s like holding up a mirror to your own culture, the one that you have grown up in; you see what your home country does well and maybe not so well.”