Hej! My name is Jennifer Abplanalp and I hail from Madison, Wisconsin, where I study Life Science Communications and Environmental Studies at the University of Wisconsin. I’ve wanted to travel to Denmark for a very long time.
Part of my heritage is Danish as my maternal grandmother’s parents, my great grandparents, immigrated to the United States from Denmark in the early part of the twentieth century. And it was this heritage that I heard and learned the most about growing up.
However, my interest in Copenhagen now also extends beyond my family history as I have become very interested in bicycling as a mode of transportation. And Copenhagen, as many of us know or are just now finding out, is a Mecca for those interested in transportational cycling and livable cities.
This, and my interest in environmental studies, is the major impetus behind my taking the courses that I’m taking, that is, Livability in a Modern City with Sophia Schuff and Bianca Hermansen and Food Systems with Glykeria Koutina during session two.
I am really looking forward to learning how we can design cities to be more livable and I hope to take this knowledge back home and apply it, either in a future career or as a base for further education into the field.
Being an avid bike commuter in Madison I have commuted thousands of miles in rain, snow, wind, and a temperature range of easily 100 degrees. But this week I had my first substantial wait to turn right onto the cycle track because the morning bike traffic was too heavy. That was a spectacular, make-a-mental-note first.
Copenhagen is beautiful. I love the charm, I love the narrow streets, and I love the cobblestones … although I love turning my ankle while walking on them daily a little less. This city has a history, a texture, and a vitality that no city back home can match. I am so excited to experience it, if only for a few short weeks.