Wow oh wow. If you think summer flies by at home, you should see what it’s like in Copenhagen. I personally think this city should steal the title of “The City That Never Sleeps” from NYC. Session two is quickly coming to a close and as my friends pack their bags and class comes to an end, I’m realizing how important it is to take every moment here for all that it is.
When reflecting on the first few weeks of my journey with DIS, lots of great and also challenging memories come to mind. While it may not be the most fun thing to think about, studying abroad is not always a walk in the park. There are tough days and long nights but every single second, you learn more and more about yourself than you ever thought there was to learn. Hard things aside, the wonderful memories way outweigh the hard ones. After all, on a long day, you get to walk through a castle garden and that’s a feeling like no other.
Some of my favorite memories over the past few weeks are not the ones I’ve written about in a blog post or posted pictures of on Facebook. My favorite memories have been extremely organic and will be the memories that stick with me the longest. Whether it be getting lost in the rain with new friends on the first night in the city, running through the airport with 17 classmates and a professor trying not to miss our flight to Scotland or walking 2 miles just to find a bubble ice cream cone (it’s a Danish thing) on the hottest day of the summer, it really has been an incredible journey.
While I am fortunate enough to spend the next few weeks taking another class in Copenhagen, saying goodbye to my new friends has been pretty tough. These precious moments have created a lot of conversation, much of which has been rooted in a few pieces of advice.
- Be scared! Going abroad is scary. Don’t expect it not to be. Let yourself have a second or two of panic and then pull yourself together and figure it all out. The best part of this experience has been the sheer amount you will learn in countless activities and social situations. This picture was taken at sunset after a night of local celebration. My friend and I decided to take a long way home and experience a different side of the city. While it can be concerning to think about getting lost at dark in a foreign city, experiences like this one force you to break away from your typical thoughts and get to know a city on a more personal level.
- Be a tourist! Take pictures of everything and don’t worry about being “that person.” Who knows the next time you will get to do the things you’re doing now. Don’t miss the chance to save the memory of something great. This picture was taken in a little town outside of Copenhagen on a class field trip. We were able to assist in the process of coffee bean roasting and learn all about how one couple is making a difference in the lives of Ethiopian coffee farmers.
- Be Bold! You are not going to learn a single thing if you visit another country and spend the entire time hanging out with friends from home or from sitting in your room. Get out and talk to people. Ask questions. Get laughed at for your HORRENDOUS pronunciation of basic words. Believe it or not, people want to talk to you. They’re glad you’re here (for the most part) and they have a ton to share with you. This picture was taken during a concert in celebration of Sankt Hans Aften, a huge holiday in Denmark. Getting to experience such a vibrant culture during this celebration taught me more about Denmark than any class ever could.
As I begin the second half of my journey, I’m hoping things will slow down a bit. As nice as that sounds, I know if anything, it’ll all end up going by faster than it is now. Here’s to five more weeks of Copenhagen memories.
Until the next adventure,