Tivoli at Halloween

October 14, 2009

After Tivoli closes for the season in September, it temporarily reopens for two special occasions: Halloween and Christmas. Last year we somehow missed the bazillion posters advertising the dates for the Halloween opening, and we missed it. Turns out the temporary opening is just for the week of the fall school Holiday, and not at Halloween. This year we were on the ball, and the girls made it to Tivoli not just once, but twice.

On Saturday, October 10, I took Eden, Cate, and Cate’s friend Johanna, to Tivoli for the day. It was cool, not too cold, and partly sunny. The girls rode all the rides they wanted to ride multiple times. A few rides they skipped, like Det Gyldne Tårn (The Golden Tower), a free-fall ride, and Vertigo, a new ride where you’re in a plane that goes around multiple times in vertical loop while also rotating. Eden & Johanna (Cate’s friend from Estonia) really liked the Monsoon, but to her great disappointment, Cate was literally millimeters too short to be allowed to ride it.

Tivoli does the seasonal decorations well, and for Holloween they go all out: pumpkins and scarecrows everywhere; a parade with a Prince and Princess Pumpkin; pumpkin lights; a small haybale maze; tons of holiday themed shopping. See the photos here. It was interesting to compare Tivoli at Halloween (one of the oldest amusement parks in the world) and Disneyland Paris at Halloween (an amusement park based in some part on Tivoli). Tivoli has real pumpkins, real scarecrows in cloth shirts and actual hay. Disney: well…a bit more plastic.

In any event, the girls liked it so much they went a second time during the October break. This time with Eden’s friends from Brazil. On their own. On the bus to downtown Copenhagen. And back. In the dark. And they paid for much of it with their own money!

Cate, Johanna, and Eden at Tivoli

Cate, Johanna, and Eden at Tivoli

Rachelle was a little worried; however, 7 year old kids routinely take the Metro to school on their own here. There’s a different cultural norm, and honestly it does feel that incredibly safe.

Needless to say, they made it home, perhaps a little cold, but thrilled to have gone to Tivoli twice in one week.


Oh, My…

October 11, 2009
Eden's Height

Eden's Height, October 2009



Kulturnatten 2009

October 10, 2009

Every year, in what is a fantastic idea, Copenhagen hosts Kulturnatten, literally ‘The Culture Night’, or better translated Night of Culture. (Follow the link for more details.) All around Copenhagen, artists, community groups, and museums put on dozens of cultural presentations: concerts, meditative worship services, tours of the Royal Exchange, jewelry making, Greenlandic crafts, plays, art shows, a science fair, film shorts, dance, and explorations of life in the Danish WW2 resistance. In other words, a massive celebration of all things Denmark. All of this costs about the price of two beers or three Cokes, transportation included. While something like Seattle’s Bumbershoot, Folklife Festival, or SeaFair might compare, a critical difference is that Kulturnatten involves most of the city’s cultural institutions, is wildly diverse, and largely grassroots.

Cate singing in The Junior Gospel Choir

Cate singing in The Junior Gospel Choir

Rachelle and the girls recently joined a gospel choir, which participated in Kulturnatten. I do find it a little surreal that in this wildly secular country, there’s 100 people who not only are excited to sing gospel music, but who are also willing to pay quarterly fees to do so. On the other hand, Danes do like to join things (clubs of all sorts abound here), and Danes love to sing. Christmas, for example, features both numerous Saint Lucia festivals of white-robed singing girls, and also families holding hands, circling the Christmas tree, and singing their hearts out.

Last night at their Kulturnatten performance, the sanctuary of of the neo-classically columned Gospelkirken was filled, steaming warm and literally to the rafters with about 200 people not once, but three times over, to hear the music. The girls had fun, and the choir was rocking. We’ve uploaded some video to YouTube for you to check out.

Poor, Poor Sammy :(

October 8, 2009

Last week Sammy went to the groomer for the first time since June. Maybe it was coincidence, maybe not, but over the weekend his, um, glands got abscessed. Sunday, he had to spend all day in his cage so that he wouldn’t bleed all over the furniture. Monday Rachelle took him to the vet, who inserted a drain, cleaned his teeth and pulled a baby tooth. Since then he’s had to wear the cone of shame and, for the first couple of days, diapers.

Ah, the indignity. 

He’s been spending all day in the bathroom to help calm him down, and so that he doesn’t scoot around on his tush and rip open his glandular area. Rachelle takes him back to the vet on Friday to get the drain removed. He’ll be thrilled to be allowed back on the couch. We may even let him sleep on the bed.

Can we humiliate him any more?

Can we humiliate him any more?