Denmark – North ZealandPosted: July 28, 2011
Delightfully Danish!!! Maybe it’s the good impression that Princess Mary has made, or the fact that my clever husband has adorned our camper with a couple of Australian flags to announce our nationality, but we have found The Danes the most friendly and outgoing people so far – they seek us out to talk, or help, whichever they can do! They are a happy, life loving people, well heeled and very good looking! I’ve never seen so many good looker older people, and the young ones!!!
Our first encounter with friendliness was sitting next to a family at dinner, who were celebrating the birth of their first grandchild and included us as if we were life long friends. The daughter had met Princess Mary on various occasions and I saw my chance to ask for an email! But! Manners put me off. (Oh well, we are a bit too busy to spend much time with her anyway!!!)
We thought perhaps this friendship was just a result of the beautiful place we all found ourselves. When we left the ferry arriving in Denmark, a snap decision saw us head right instead of left to the well worn track straight to Copenhagen. We had no idea what to expect and at best, probably wanted a nice quiet park by the coast to spend the night. Instead we discovered a tiny, sophisticated village, stomping ground of the Danish rich, famous and ordinary! The word for “Gilleleje” is “cute.” Plain cute! But so cute, you need to say it at least 5 times: Cute Cute Cute Cute Cute. A cross between a small Portsea, Sorrento with a mixture of Red Hill and the Cottswalds!
Only 80 kms from the heart of Copenhagen, surrounded by fields of wheat and crops of corn, sorghum and potatoes, settled on the bay facing Sweden, a working fishing village, filled with very old, thatch covered cottages and lined with gourmet food shops, cafes, restaurants, clothes and gift shops. The ideal place to keep a beach cottage/weekend. We instantly made ourselves comfortable. Even with the wet weather we entertained ourselves for two days, doing loads of washing in the well equipped laundromat, walking the cliff top walking paths, visiting the library to check internet, and just taking every chance to observe these well quaffed Danes going about their holiday/weekender business! Feeling quite at home, I was actually asked for directions by Danes on 3 separate occasions!!! I figure, this may be because I have learned I have some Danish blood, as I love to remind Antonio. A history novel I am reading, set in Ireland has taught me that the Doyle family on my mothers side, originated from the Danish Vikings!!!!
The other surprise was the supermarket. Filled with fresh produce it seems we have not seen for ages. Fresh peas, green beans and pumpkin, fresh (not frozen) chickens, the sweetest water melon I have ever had!! You know you are somewhere good when a Supermodel, Helena Christensen, with her mother and son, is standing in the supermarket queue behind you!
Tearing ourselves away I had arranged a day of sight seeing enroute to Copenhagen, starting with a small village, Annisse. A short version of the bad news is we got a flat tyre, and not being able to remove the spare tyre (bolts are faulty), 9 hrs and about $900 later, we were sorted. The good news was meeting “the Madsens.” Henrik, Maibritt, Cecilie, Emil and their two Collies! All on holidays, and loving Australians, they took us under their wing and into their home! Henrik guided us on a 30 km round trip bike ride to pass the time to see the Frederiksberg Slot, part of the initial sightseeing agenda. The bike ride being far more interesting and active than the drive we had planned. Coffee, real Danish pastries, use of their internet to check emails, and a transfer to the town to pick up said tyre, we are so grateful for their friendship and kindness.
Leaving at the end of the day, we headed for our other sight seeing destination. Rungstead. Home of the author, the late Karen Blixon (famous of course for Out of Africa, but also Babbets Feast!). Looking for a park to be ready to start tomorrow at her museum/house, we headed into the marina across the road. Feeling a bit lost, and considering the best place to camp ourselves, a knock at the door! Its another Dane, introducing herself, offering to help. They had their Yacht Zig Zag birthed here and were just about to leave after working on her all day. She offered their park, next to the tap with fresh town drinking water, 4 meters from their power plug!!! All we need is internet access and we could park here for a week! Add to that, the restaurants (mini South Bank) lining the harbour for our evening stroll. Let me tell you, we are LOVING Denmark!