Chew at Will - Backpackering Journal
Journal of my travellings in Europe
By: peoples car

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Saturday, 7-Aug-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark

Viborg, my old hometown. They didn't even know what hit 'em when I got there. My entrance was albeit a quiet one, but it was still a rockin' chapter of my tour. Not too much to say (that I can say), but I had a great time meeting up with my old friends and classmates and host family.

I made it to København (Copenhagen) yesterday to meet with my Danish friend, Nynne. At about 10pm we out to see her boyfriend's friend, Torben's, concert at a club on one of the downtown canals. His style was almost 100% Dave Matthews band and he didn't have any Danish accent when he sung. Later on we headed back and relaxed at Nynne's pad until people started falling asleep in the chairs.

Come to think of it, there's not too much amazing or interesting things to say. None that I can remember, anyway. Tuesday morning is my flight back to the states. I want to say it's strange to be going back, because Europe is so different from the states, but there's not one bit of anxiety in me. Maybe being anxious to get back is cancelled by being anxious to stay. I think the more likely reason is where I am now. Denmark was once my home, and being here is so familiar that I lose the excitement of seeing new things. My friends have also been taking care of me so hospitibly that I loose all feelings of being a stranger in a strange land. Weird...


No pics this time--I had a hard enough time trying to find a simple internet café, let alone one with a USB port so I can upload my pics.


Friday, 30-Jul-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Ballum

Ballum Windmills
Ballum Museum
Ballum Minimarket
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Unfortunatly, I have only a short amount of time for my whole trip. Even though the hospitality of my friend was as limitless as the ocean, I had to take my leave and continue my jouney, Thursday I high-tailed it outta Dresden and found my way to another haven of hospitality in southern Denmark. I am staying with a host family of mine from when I lived in Denmark for the next couple of days.

It seems that wherever I go, I always get the best and least expected luck. For example: at nearly half the towns I went to, I got the last bed at the last open hostel; another example would be all the times I've run to the train station and hopped on the last train of the day just as it's leaving. One more of these lucky stories happened just yesterday when I had just arrived in Denmark. Since there is no train to the town I'm staying in, Ballum, I've always had to take the train to Tønder, a large city nearby. Yesterday when I left the train, I figured I would be getting off at the rutebilstation (bus station). Instead, I found myself at the train station with no busses coming by anytime soon. I found my way to the rutebilstation then found the bus number that I was supposed to take. It turned out that I had just missed my bus and the next one came at 10:15 in the night, and it was only 7:00 in the evening. Great. I went to a nearby phonebooth and tried calling my host family. No one answered so I called the minimarket they own. I still got no answer (as I found out later, the store was closed at that time) so I figured they were out walking or something so I waited a half hour before calling again. Still no answer, and still my only choice was to wait again and call. Still no answer, and I was becoming really uncomfortable with the legibility of the numbers I scribbled on my hand as I was leaving for the train station that morning. After waiting another half hour, I called again, got no answer, then let my creative side take over. I figured that if I couldn't reach them, someone else could; after all, everyone in Ballum knows them because they all shop at the minimarket. I tried a few random numbers and got no answer. By the fourth call I was about to give up when suddenly I heard a voice at the end of the like. Keeping in mind that I was calling a random number, I answered the person I was calling as politely as I could. "Goddag, jeg hedder Brad, og jeg kalder op til at find ud, hvordan jeg kan finde Anne Marie og Knud Kristiansen." (Good day, my name is Brad and I am calling to find Anne Marie and Knud Kristiansen). As I found out later, the number I called belonged to the town meeting hall and sports gym. Of all the numbers in the area I could have called (one thousand numbers), the person attatched to the other end happened to be Anne Marie. Was that winning the lottery, or what?


Wednesday, 28-Jul-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
das fest

Outside wall of the fortress
Inside the fortress, it was fun to be five again
From the parapet
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It's been a long time since I went five days without blogging. It's so strange, but I feel like my trip is over already. I still have thirteen days left, more than a sixth of my whole trip, but it's as if I'm back in the US already. Maybe staying one place on a nice bed with real food and consistantly sane company for so long has given me the wonderful and long-forgotten feeling of comfort in my surroundings. It's like I'm catching up on eight weeks of lost sleep.

Though things are flowers and pies right now, I am really, really, really sore about one thing: Jethro Tull. Susan took me to a festival in Karlsrühe, a city on the west German border about 150 km from Strasbourg, France. It was a gigantic "das fest" that lasted all weekend. Sunday, the day Jethro Tull played, I woke up with a killer headache that left me stapled by the hair to my pillow all day and night. The town I was staying in, Völkersbach, was celebrating its 750th birthday as well that weekend, so it just so happened that they held the largest fireworks show the town has ever seen that night. If ever I heard of a quick cure for a headache, it's loud and bright fireworks! (completely audible and visible from my room)

Gotta go adventure some more... think I'm seeing an old German fortress today.

I'm back from the fortress and it was cool. Most of what I've seen on my trip so far has been post-1700 A.D. homesteads built for dainty lords and ladies, so seeing this brute 1600s stronghold was fresh air for me. Susan and I got to see a few clever aspects of the fortress as well as all the awesome views it held. Big thanks to Sanni for taking me all around.

Tomarrow I am leaving for Denmark, where I'll be catching up with old host families and old friends. I start in southern Jutland and rail up to my "home" town, Viborg. From there it's straight off to Copenhagen to meet with some more friends, then back to the states.


Friday, 23-Jul-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Tre skaal til Niels

Soaked the...
...stick-ends with...
...gasoline.
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Yeah Niels! This blog entry is dedicated to the illustrious Niels Thimmer and his great timing with his cameraphone. Niels captured my first fire performance, and cheers to him for posting the pictures. Hazaa!


As for Dresden, everything is going great. We took it easy on Thursday because of the huge thunderstorm... okay, the storm was over by noon, but we still decided to take it easy for the rest of the day. Susan took me to the old town and gave me an info tour about the different castles and churches. today (Friday) we will be driving out to... I don't remember the name, but it should be cool if the weather is good. An annual festival--the biggest blank blank of blank in blank, as far as I know.


Thursday, 22-Jul-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Prague

Lisa up on stage. Sorry for the bad pic, it's the best I found.
Thanks Niels, this picture will go down in history
Us at the concert. Love the smile, Goran.
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It's getting really hard to pick favorites. Added among the very top of the list is Prague. It's heavy. Wicked heavy. I could not imagine a more gothic and dark city. Even in the sunshine, there's an intangible shadow of a mellinium of cultivated medieval barbarity; as if there never was a Renaissance in this immortal city. The magnifigence of its world-famous Charles Bridge is compounded with the view of the city that you get while standing on it: on one side is the great Prague Castle with a view of St. Nick's cathedral; another is the old city of Prague; perpendicular is the Vlatava river; and all around is dark city just described. If only I gave myself more time there!

I just arrived in Dresden yesterday, and will be exploring the old city (the part that wasn't massacred by the British air force in WWII) with my friend, Susan. I am staying at Susan's apartment, close the the Elbe river, until Friday, when we will drive 600 km. with 5 people in the car to a festival held near Susan's home town. Should be cool. Jethro Tull will be playing. Woo!

Ah, Miss Lisa, I'm sorry! It has come to my attention that I didn't write about the Zucchero concert:

Way totally awesome. I was hanging with a couple Danes and Slovenians and we got free tickets to see the multi-platinum Italian singer Zucchero in Ljubljana. Once we got in we elbowed our way to the front stage and danced and rocked and lit our lighters and had a hell of a time.

The tickets we got from Lisa, the wonderful, radical and fun backup singer for Zucchero. That's right, I have a famous friend; I've got some surrogate coolness going here. We met Lisa at the Skeleton Bar, a back-alley basement pub decorated with all the new and traditional skeletal fashions of the region. After the concert, we met up with Lisa again and turned the tiny pub into a rock'n'roll dance club for the night. Way way cool, thanks to the Danes, Slovenians, Croatian, and American for the awesome night.


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