Thursday, August 30, 2007
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
So, why did we go to Lund? Well, when it became known that I was moving to CBS at the International Communication Association Conf. last May, a mentor of mine at the University of Colorado in Boulder arranged for an "email" introduction with two scholars at Lund University.
They invited me to Lund to meet them and take a tour of the University and town. Dan and Mats, the scholars at Lund University, were quite friendly and spent the afternoon meeting with me and Joel. Dan met us at the train station and treated us to lunch in the town square. He then walked us to the University campus, which included a stop at his new house. I say new house because it is new to him -- but the house itself is not new. It was build mid 19th C. The house was very quaint and beautifully designed in traditional Swedish style.The campus is quite nice and the facilities are contemporary. Like many Danish Universities, their department also has a full kitchen and eating room. It is customary for colleagues to eat together for lunch. While it seems strange for us to take time to eat together -- and we don't always participate in the group lunches (Joel and I usually just eat at our desks) -- the lunch gatherings always prove fun and interesting. While we had coffee in the kitchen area with Mats and Dan, several colleagues stopped by and said hello. Clearly Danes and Swedes place a high priority on collegiality.
Dan and Mats were very nice to invite me back to Lund as they continue to work on several very interesting projects on identity, leadership, and work.
As for Lund, it was like stepping back into the 18th Century. The town could not be more quaint if Disney designed it. We are looking forward to going back and spending a bit more time wandering around the town's tiny cobble stoned streets and touring the rather large cathedral.
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
Just as we were getting ready to leave for work, dressed for the sunny day that was predicted, we got a bit of a surprise: hail! It wasn't even that warm, just 15C (about 57 F). But, all of the sudden it got dark and then started to hail. But, never fear, by time we got over our shock the storm was over and we were able to continue to work :)
Here is a brief video from our balcony.
This brief storm provides evidence for why you ALWAYS carry an umbrella in Copenhagen!
Monday, August 27, 2007
and that Danish sweets are WONDERFUL! We learned that water is truly optional when it comes to an apartment living and that you can in fact move with just two suitcases and a Metro. We feel better knowing that even the Danes can't agree on how to pronounce their own language (our Danish is not coming as quickly as we hoped) and are grateful that most Danes know English. We discovered that Nutella makes almost everything taste better.
In light of many frustrations (bank account problems, noisy and "water-free" apartments) we take great joy in minor victories... like my recent trip to the dentist:
Before we left the States Joel and I had our teeth cleaned by our regular dentist. I told Dr. Garza to look very carefully for any possible problems -- I wanted to take care of everything before we left. He said I had a small cavity that should be filled. Unfortunately, we ran out of time before we left. I figured I would have it filled when we arrived in Copenhagen. Well, my cavity was a low priority for the first two months (understandably), but I was becoming quite worried that the cavity was growing and possibly creating even greater problems. So, last week I took a day off from work and went to a dentist recommended by one of my American colleagues. I managed to locate the dentist office, figure out the public transportation and had my cavity filled with no Novocaine! That's right... nothing to dull the pain. Now, before you think that Denmark is some scary third world country that refuses pain relief to its patients, the dentist offered me Novocaine. But, because the cavity was so small (much to my relief... ) he didn't think I would need it. And, if fact he was right. I hardly noticed he was even doing anything at all... I nearly feel asleep in the chair (which was very comfy). I emerged from dentists office quite proud of myself. I even filled out the patient information form (which was in Danish) without too much help from the receptionist. It may seem like a small victory, but it was huge to me.
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Thursday, August 16, 2007
Monday, August 13, 2007
We are very happy here in Copenhagen. Actually, our new address locates us in Frederiksberg, which is a part of larger Copenhagen. We are just west of the city center. In trying to describe the area, the City Centre (where we used to live) is similar to Times Square and Frederiksberg is like New York City's Upper West Side. It is a quiet area full of very nice houses and cute little flats. The windows all have boxes full of flowers and the yards are nicely manicured. There are many cafes and restaurants as well as gourmet shops and boutiques. And, my office is located in Frederiksberg -- a short 10 minute bus ride or a less-short 30 minute walk from our flat. The former summer home for the Danish monarchs, now a beautiful park with several ponds, is located less than 20 meters from my office building. One of our guide books describes Frederiksberg as "quiet and refined." That describes our experience quite well.
In other news, we had a wonderful time visiting with our new pastor, his wife Natalie, and another couple from the church when they had us over for dinner last week. While the congregation meets in a church in Copenhagen the pastor lives in a house in Hellerup, a beautiful "suburb" to the north of Copenhagen. The pastor lives in the top floor of the house and then the basement and ground floor serve as church offices and meeting rooms. The house and grounds are beautiful. As if turns out, the church bought the house in the 1970s when Hellerup was not as nice. Then, in the years following, several embassies and large corporations purchased and refurbished houses in the same area and Hellerup is now a very affluent and beautiful area to live. It is also very convenient to get to --just a short ride on the S-tog (train). It was really nice to meet the other couple from church. They are both Americans and musicians. He (I am not sure I should include their names...) plays the flute for the Copenhagen Ballet and Opera and she is a singer. They've lived here for over 7 years. We also really enjoyed getting to know our Pastor and his wife, Natalie a bit better. As it turns out, Pastor Rimmer and I were both at UNC at the same time. He did his BS (in biology!) at UNC while I was there doing my Master's work. And, their first church was in York, Pennsylvania, near where I went to college. In fact, Natalie took classes at Millersville University, my alma mater for her Masters in Education. Very small world...
Natalie fixed an incredible meal including broccoli salad -- one of my favorites! She also made a traditional Danish dessert. I forgot the name of it so I won't blog about it too much right now, but I plan to get the recipe and fix it for all who visit! It was YUMMY!
More to come...
Thursday, August 9, 2007
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