Eleanor Parker
Eleanor's adventures-Copenhagen and Colorado

After going through this blog for the millionth time to relive my glory days in cph, I thought to myself “what if I want to do that after I graduate from CC”, so thus begins a long line of throwback posts detailing last semester. because facebook won’t be cool one day, ya know?

Coming back

Well, I’m back in the good ol U S of A. Looking through photos today it all seems so distant-did that really all just happen? Part of me feels like I never left the quiet comfort of the CC campus-the same people are here doing the same things. Another large part of me feels like I haven’t left Denmark. Not fully. I keep thinking I will wake up to that harsh sunrise and the sounds of Club Hive blasting through the ancient yellow walls of Skindergade 40. Instead I wake up to a large and half unpacked room on Weber street-the air hot and heavy. Fans blasting. Dogs barking. And alone, without my little crew of friends I had grown to depend on over 5 months. I drive to King Soopers and walk aisle after aisle of prepackaged food, completely overwhelmed at the new abundance of choices I am faced with. Gone are the days of walking down Fiolstræde to the sounds of the accordion man, shopping at our three aisle Netto (and buying the wrong food-too prideful to ask what the Danish words on the packaging meant). I’ve been doing this a lot, comparing the two worlds. It’s really not helpful.
It’s not that Colorado is any worse than my life in Denmark (okay maybe slightly less glamorous), it’s just different and I’m trying to get used to it. Now in a very simplified list, things I will miss about Denmark

1.Copenhagen itself. Which was just voted the most livable city in the world! I could go on and on about all the specifics (Rosenborg park, Nyhavn, Cafe Paluden…) but here’s an awesome video announcing Copenhagen as the most livable city!
(yes, I got to live in the middle of all that! most of those shots are within a few blocks of my apartment)

2.Skindergade 40. Well the building itself was pretty cool, but mostly I just miss the proximity and closeness that came with the cramped corners. I miss cooking and singing and drinking and playing with these people.

3. No work! Not ashamed to say it-I pretty much got to do whatever I wanted for an entire semester (okay I did some work but…pretty minimal) But what is important to note is, when given no direction/responsibilities/obligations) what did I do? A lot of photography and exploring. So I know I need to do something like that as a job because it never felt like work. I would do it for free. Hopefully somebody will one day pay for me to do such things. Hopefully.

4. Hanne and Klaus. I couldn’t have asked for better visiting host parents. I just heard back from them for the first time and I miss them a ton. 

Things I will not miss

1.The Danish kroner. Enough said.

2.Lack of sunlight. Honestly, summer in Copenhagen (the few days I had of it) was the most magical, beautiful and soul inspiring thing I’ve ever experienced. But that came after MANY MONTHS of zero sunlight. I thank the fine state of Colorado for replenishing my vitamin D supply. 

That said, I think I can take everything I learned this past semester and apply it to my life here. I took away a lot about what it means to pursue things that make you happy, and after 2 weeks working for the governor’s office I have officially declared my intent to never go into politics. Working there is great, I just do not want to do that for the rest of my life. So obviously most of this year is going to work out what I do actually want to do. I don’t need to be 100% correct, but I need to start somewhere..
In the meantime I am keeping my part time employed self busy doing things I love. I hiked Mt.Torrey’s and Grey’s Peak on Wednesday and wow, I don’t think I realized how much I missed camping until I was laying in my tent and gazing at the milky way. Even after seeing a LOT of beautiful and magnificent sites this past semester, it is damn hard to beat the view of Colorado when you stand at 14,000 ft. Even if your sea level lungs are screaming at you the entire time. I only brought a disposable camera with me so pics will have to wait.

I’m hoping to learn how to cook (so much easier here! though yes, still have yet to get through all of King Soopers-its so big!), and I’m enjoying decorating my first house! I hope to explore Colorado with my free weekends, and maybe get some work at the local humane society photographing dogs for adoption (though it will be really hard not to walk out the door with one, which I know I can’t do). 

Basically, I found that I really like having a tumblr, and don’t want to give it up, so I shall continue writing about all the things that make me happy and bring joy into my life. And maybe some things that don’t. We shall see.

We left Barcelona early this morning but it only took 30 minutes to get to the airport instead of the three hours it took Becca and I just a few days earlier. I guess we should have looked into the directions a little more. Oh well. We got into Dusseldorf around noon and I suggested we look for a place to store our luggage-miraculously they had a room! Feeling light on my feet for the first time in weeks we got on the train to go to the movie theater that we had looked up a few days ago. They occasionally play movies in english and so we went and saw Iron Man 3 which was actually pretty good considering I had not seen the previous two movies. When I was packing last night I realized that I had somehow lost my camera charger and was freaking out because I haven’t charged my camera this entire time. We headed to this random camera shop I had looked up earlier and actually managed to find it, only to discover that apparently it is a german holiday today and NOTHING IS OPEN. Just my luck. I’m not quite sure what I’m going to do, hopefully just trust that the battery survives. I was really really looking forward to doing a lot of photography in the coming week so I’m pretty anxious about it. Coming back to the airport we got our tickets checked and apparently we had bought the wrong one. A scary non-english speaking German ticket collector pulled us off the train and was trying to explain how we both owe 40 euros. After handing him my passport and trying to explain the situation I also showed him how I had 20 euro cents to my name at the moment and when he kept pushing it I did what I do best-cried. He had let us go in under 15 seconds. My friend Mike looked at me amazed when we were walking away, noting how there would be no way in hell he would have gotten out of that by himself. While I will admit I was being a bit dramatic for sympathy, he really WAS a frightening German train conductor and the tears weren’t entirely forced. So now we sit at the Dusseldorf airport, awaiting our 3 hour flight to Reykjiavic (still pretty sure I spelled that wrong and I have typed it at least 25 times since booking this flight). We get in at 11 and are staying at my friend Erin’s rented apartment with her family. Then we are up bright and early (good thing the sun rises at 3am or something) to pick up our car and gps and then we head straight to cave exploring and snorkeling! I’m a bit nervous because there are just so many things that could go wrong but really nothing to do about it now. 

Croatia & Barcelona

It’s been quite the journey the past week! We arrived in Croatia very confused about how to get to Dubrovnik/our apartment, and well..it took us a solid 2 hours to finally get there-the last 200 meters where in a taxi. We got there-really can’t complain. An hour later Abby arrived from her bus from Serbia (where she was studying abroad). I couldn’t believe I was finally seeing her after all these months-I think it hammered home the point that this semester was actually over. It was great having her with us because she knew all of the local foods and introduced us to some great ones (who knew??). It was pretty rainy most of the time we were there but it was still quite beautiful. We even had an older group of guys buy us dinner/drinks because, in their words, “we were once young and living on a limited budget, trying to travel”(one of them had actually done DIS!). We promised to pass it forward when we were so able. We went out to an island on the second day which was gorgeous and serene and just perfect (except for all the peacocks-becca has a fear of birds). Dubrovnik itself was just absolutely packed with tourists coming off the cruise ships, which wasn’t really my scene. I forgot that we are finally traveling “in season” now and I have been spoiled so far with zero crowds. Some places just feel better with crowds (places like London, Miami or New York would be sad/out of place empty) but the crowds in Dubrovnik felt weird-this quaint walled seaside town was stuffed to the brim with busloads of Asian tourists and an older cruise ship crowd. That said, we still had an awesome time and I would definitely recommend Croatia to anybody who wants a seaside experience (that’s pretty cheap as well). 

We didn’t think it was possible for our journey from the airport to be even worse than Croatia, but Barcelona actually was. It took us 3 hours and a very kind stranger on the streets to actually get us to the hostel-I felt really bad about that since we were meeting our friend Seema there and she probably thought we had died. But it was awesome to see her after all these months and she brought one of her friends from her abroad program who was awesome as well! 

We went down to the main street and walked around well into the night, only to wake up early the next day for a walking tour of the gothic part of town. After waiting in line for farrr too long (Spaniards are NOT in a hurry…to do anything) for sandwiches (I did not indulge). Then we walked to allll of the Guadi sites. I won’t bore you (not that I was bored, it was freaking awesome..it was just a lot). I have a pedometer on my phone and in total we walked 17 miles. I need to finish packing for ICELAND but I’ll try to finish this later. Perhaps during my nine hour layover tomorrow. Yikes.