“Livet må leves forfra, men kan kun forstås bagfra.”

This blog entry is about Denmark, the lovely place where one of my favorite philosophers is from: Søren Kierkegaard.

Why this random blog?

Because I’m once again touring with the Shakespeare in Performance Project in The Netherlands and last weekend we worked in Copenhagen. Random? Yup. Cool? Hell yeah.

This is what struck me about Denmark:

1. Its quietness
At 8 am in the morning this is what Copenhagen Central station looked like. Empty! We were later told that rush hour is earlier than it is in England but still, Copenhagen is super calm, I mean we went out for a wonder on Saturday and we were all wondering where everybody was!

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2. Its Smørrebrød (better known as open sandwiches)
These are exquisite, not only in taste but also in looks.

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3. Its functionality
Three examples below.
a) Plug sockets above one’s seat on the train. They’ve got this so right. It’s a small thing but it saves time; it’s kind of pathetic to admit it’s annoying to bend down to find a socket but I only admit it now after having experienced the Danish system…all you have to do is reach up and ca-ching!

b) Cars have got a sticker of a clock on their windscreen so when you park in a public parking space all you need to do is move the hand to the appropriate arrival time. Eco-friendly methinks.

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c) Free wifi on train.

4. Its ‘utopic’ feel
Everything seems to be too perfect in Denmark. The houses are all perfectly painted and the streets are clean. The views are like something taken out of a book.

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5. Its slick (Ikea type) design
This is based on the only Danish home I know but still, its style was very different; no carpets, lots of clean white walls, super cool bold lamps and views like this one where you can actually see Sweden on the other side. Mental.

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6. Its free-spirited education system
Again, this is based on the only school I’ve ever worked at in Denmark. Plus, it was an international school. Who knows if all schools work in the same way. Most probably not. However, it’s no news that the educational system in the Scandinavian countries is quite unique and what struck me the most about their style was its sense of, erm, freedom. Schedules had been modified because we were coming but it felt like it was absolutely fine to change schedules a million times. We worked on the Merchant of Venice with the students; this pic is of some art work they did.

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Please note: These views are based on a two day experience of the country. Limited but real. And in case you’re wondering…this is what the title of this blog entry actually means: “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards”. What a wise dude Kierkegaard was.

Peace out! X

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