Seattle, Washington, USA
Hello Blogg-o-perusers and welcome to my adventure! It's my return to the land of the large (USA) from the land of the vikings (Denmark) and hot damn! Talk about some reverse culture shock. I came to live in Denmark 2.3 years ago. I was in the midst of a great backpacking adventure when my travel companion caught malaria (in Africa or Indonesia, we don't know which) and had to go home (Don't worry! She lives! Quite well now, actually). I thought I was alone in Munich for the holiday season when my Danish friend, Sven (who I'd met when he was an exchange student at my university) invited me to Copenhagen to spend Christmas with his family. I accepted! And what a magical Christmas it was. There was Marzipan and schnapps, flæskesteg and ris a la mande. For the first time in my holiday history, I saw real candles on the Christmas tree and we held hands and sang while walking around it. I felt like I'd been dropped right into the happyland of Whoville from the movie, How the Grinch Stole Christmas. It was lovely. It was cozy. It was the epitome of what the Danes call "Hyggelig". And in the midst of it all, I fell in love. And so I stayed. 2.3 years of living with the polite, beer-loving Danes have now gone by. It wasn't the easiest culure for me to adapt to at first, but adapt I feel I finally have. And with adaption, has come change. I've come to like the quiet, simple life of this Scandinavian country. Commuting by bicycle, long dinners, and lots of "hyggelig" time (Lit candles at mealtime? Clearly a neccesity!). Now I am returning to my home city of Seattle with Sven (now my fiance) and our rescue dog George in tow, and I am wondering just how it will be to fit back into the culture I grew up in. Will I love America, the country I've missed, just a little bit less? Or is my current love of Denmark simply me having forgotten the culture I came from and acceded to the culture I was living in? Well, stretch those peepers and get ready to read--my reverse culture shock is about to proceed!