Hello and Goodbye


09. Maj – 16. Maj [Week 03]:

Our final week of the spring semester was quite a rushed experience. Because we had set aside a whole week to be with our core courses the entire previous, the last week for our elective classes ended up being the first time seeing each other in person, and also our last. So we ended up having brunches and chatting with our professors, reminiscing about the past semester. In my Danish Language and Culture class, my professor brought us to Paludan Book Cafe, where we had the entire upstairs reserved for the class. The cafe lies right outside the University of Copenhagen’s library, so the area has this very ‘dark academia’ feel to it. In my Environmental Philosophy class, my professor had us meet in what would have been our usual classroom (which was my first time in a classroom setting since March 2020!) and then took us on a short walk from the DIS building through Gammel Strand, and right into the bibliotek have inside Christiansborg Slot. This is where the statue of Kirkegaard lies, at the fountain in the center of a beautiful garden area in front of the library.

In my Graphic Design Studio, our professor took us out for lunch at Falang which had an interesting branding concept and pretty interior and exterior design. Afterwards, we went to the exhibition at Cisternerne in Fredericksberg, which is an underground aqueduct that provided clean drinking water to Copenhagen. It is now an underground exhibition space that rotates regularly, and involves the audience to get into a small rowing boat and guide themselves through the underwater canals. This was an experience of a lifetime and a highlight of my entire term there. The darkness of the exhibition and the quietness of the audience so as not to cause a massive disturbance only heightened all the senses when observing this space.

It was a funny experience meeting everyone in person after being on zoom in a totally different for the last 4 months, because naturally, you develop preconceived ideas about what they might be like from a very specific perspective of the webcam on zoom. Despite being online until the very end, I have no complaints about how this past semester could have gone– if we had arrive before Denmark closed their borders, during the long dark winters, with nothing being opened, it might have not seemed worth our while. I feel especially grateful for the lift of travel restrictions in April, and the country opening back up again, slowly but surely. But it was particularly exciting because during this time, we were virtually the only Americans in the city. All the locals were shocked to see a few of us around– and I had actually gone into a store to buy a jacket, and the lady managing the store was excited to speak English again to the tourists. It had been such a warm, welcoming experience for me, going to new parts of Copenhagen this week and finally interacting with the locals.