Diana in Copenhagen: My First Week

Hello from Copenhagen!

 

After I had less than 48 hours to get ready and pack, I somehow made my way to Logan airport in time for my big European sendoff. I waddled around the airport equipped with a backpack “carry on” that was about the size I am, a tote bag “purse” heavier than most children I’ve seen, and a suitcase that tested the airline luggage worker’s strictness on weight limits. I was ready to begin my journey.

Me at the gate at Logan

Me at the gate at Logan Airport

To be fair, the said journey had a rocky start when I found that I was the lucky one placed at a middle seat with a broken screen on the seven-hour flight to Germany and, of course, the air conditioning on the flight was broken. Alas, things started to look up once a flight attendant restarted my screen and the AC finally started working.

 

The flight from Germany was short though, and before I knew it I was touching down in my new home. The Copenhagen weather welcomed me with rain, which I’ve learned is not surprising. Rare is a day here where there’s not a single shower—something I have yet gotten used to. On a brighter note, I walked into the lobby area of the airport to a smiling Dane waiting there to greet me.

 

This semester I’ll be attending Copenhagen Business School (CBS) and they have a program that matches its exchange students with a Danish student to show us the ropes. I greeted my buddy Kristoffer with a hug and spent the entire metro ride to my dorm asking him all of my questions about Denmark. Topics of conversation ranged from what Danish food is (apparently lots of heavy foods), Danish clothing (all black everything), and Danish people (extremely happy but not often outwardly friendly).

 

Time went quickly and soon we were walking into my dorm Kathrine Kollegiet in a municipality called Frederiksberg. The dorm room is for exchange students only and my hall has students ranging from Connecticut to China, so I’m even expecting dorm living to be a multicultural experience. My single here is huge too! I’ve got a kitchenette, two big windows that open to a playground area, and my own bathroom. The kitchenette with two burners, a small sink, and a microwave is…quaint. It’s served me well to make pasta, grilled cheese, and eggs so far but we’ll see how far I can survive on those meals. I’m hoping to write a food entry later once I get more creative!

My single in Kathrine Kollegiet

My single in Kathrine Kollegiet

The bathroom really surprised me though, because in Denmark they don’t differentiate the shower from the rest of the bathroom. The “shower” is really just a curtained off corner of the room. Just a curtain—yep. Getting used to this has been interesting, but I guess the system has its perks? I never need to worry about tripping on the little lip on the ground when getting in and out of the shower and I can put my foot on the toilet to shave my legs with ease. The whole room gets soaked though; I can only defend the system so much. Outside of this odd cultural design difference, I’ve truly enjoyed playing house so far and I know it will grow my independence tenfold.

The shower area

The shower area

I arrived in Denmark a week earlier than most to take something called a “Danish Crash Course” consisting of classes to help familiarize us with the Danish language. While I’m still quite the novice (this is a nice way of telling you I can say hello, thank you, and goodbye), this course was an easy way to get to know people. Now comes the real orientation week where we have the opportunity to meet even more students and hear about life at CBS. I’ve loved my time in Denmark so far and can’t wait to have more adventures.

 

Thanks for reading!

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