07 May 2010

island living

i am more or less devoid of words, having spent most of the last three days working on an analysis of what, precisely, a little bit of california slang called "hella" may or may not mean, but somewhere in new zealand there is a woman who has a talent for shipwrecks.

i like this poem (? essay?) because i, like zara potts, am thinking about the sea; i've always lived near the sea. that's a pretty big part of the reason why i came to copenhagen. not wanting to live not on the coast eliminated a lot of cities from my potential-places-to-study-abroad list. like santiago, for example, and hyderabad. sometimes i wonder what i would have done for a year in chile or india.

i like denmark. i'm glad i came here to live for a year (and relieved that i didn't come for only six months). but there are some things about this place that make living here difficult for me. the lack of farmers' markets, for example (despite numerous other luxuries such as specialty wine and cheese shops - which of course i don't indulge in, being a poor student and not a bourgeois københavner-lejlighed owner or even employed), as well as the lack of sun (um, we're a week into may and it's 8 degrees and grey as brushed steel outside. what's wrong with this picture?). but there are other things, too. today i was talking to my kitchenmates about how i felt like being social but not like drinking and rasmus just laughed, saying i'd come to the wrong country. true that. and everyone agreed that it's a difficult thing to be social without indulging in alcohol here in denmark.

so if you love a beer with dinner and then a few more drinks and then a few more and oh taking it all on the metro or your bike with you that's great, and if you come to denmark you are totally coming to the right country because the parties are wild, the nights are long, and drinking in public is legal. but - and somehow as a college student this is somewhat emasculating - i've been having health issues for a while that have seriously limited my alcohol intake which, consequently, limits my social life. i still go to parties without drinking sometimes, but honestly, how much fun is that? the best part is talking to people (who may or may not later remember the conversation) and being able to keep a clear head, but there is a certain degree of camaraderie lost (or rather never attained) when only half of the conversation is inebriated. plus it's kind of boring not to have any misadventures falling off bikes or stumbling home...

i'm not saying that drinking isn't a huge part of youth interaction and culture anywhere in the world (it's not like kids don't drink in the US too) but i think in denmark it is just so firmly ingrained from such a young age that it's just weird not to drink even just a little and... ah, well, you get the picture.

so it's friday night. i'ma drink some chai.

1 comment:

geneviève said...

this is the best.
you have it all right.

skål to your chai with my tall glass of water.