Projekt Dejlig

Or

I Might As Well While I Am Here

A fear occurred to me recently, that I might leave Denmark and never really feel like I gave it a try. Sure, I loved it in the beginning: the clean beaches, the well motivated students, the sheer adventure of starting somewhere else.

As soon as I started noticing the mismatch between the hype and the reality, I got really pissed off and withdrew from it all. All the sugared cabbage and the dancing around Christmas trees.

Of course, in the UK, there are huge problems in terms of Islamophobia, immigration-hate and rudeness (and my solution was to leave), but it does not stop me from watching English language programmes and eating British food.

Today, I made some purchases (and caught up with a friend from Sprogskole on the street: Hi Steve!) to help me really experience Denmark. Really really experience it. So, if I leave I can think “I really really tried, I really did”. And who knows, it might be enough to keep me interested.

I joined the library and ordered “En Flyktning krysser sitt Spor” which for some reason is out of print everywhere (it is the book that satirised Scandy mediocrity with “Jante’s Laws”). It is in Norwegian but how that is going to make any difference, we will see. The lady at the library signing me up handed me a “Loan Guide” and said apologetically “It is in Danish” and I said “Oh, I can read Danish, just can’t speak it” and she gave me the biggest smile. Not even a “fuck you” smile, a “oh wow, that makes me so proud” sort of one. Or maybe “phew, I knew we didn’t need to get them translated”.

I bought Danish to Danish dictionaries. This is harder than you might expect. In the UK, there are entire shelves heaving with English to English and I managed to get a really good French one back on a French exchange back in the day which I still have. Denmark seems to have a thing for not putting dictionaries in pocket form. In fact, the one I got is a two-volume effort but it has etymologies and I am a sucker for those. It was the only one really, there was a pocket one but it was high up and not on sale. They even have crossword dictionary and synonym dictionaries (is that another name for thesaurus?)

Then I got Illustrated Videnskab which is a bloody rip off at 62 kr but has some interesting science news and occasionally I use it in my teaching.

Also, Fotex had a bit of a sale on for DVDs and I got Clovn because it looks like it might be funny. There are comedy shows on the dr.dk website and I might check those out but they just do not even look funny.

Now, I am off to the clean beach to see if the water is fit for paddling.