Sunday, February 24, 2008

Helisgnor - Elsinore Castle

"Something is rotten in the state of Denmark."

Ok well nothing is really rotten in Denmark right now, however, if you haven't already deduced, I traveled to a Danish treasure, made famous by one William Shakespeare in a little play he wrote that you might have heard of......Hamlet. Ring a bell??

Kronborg Castle, known to most as Elsinore, Hamlet's home in Denmark, is a very medieval castle, perfect for a dark tragic tale of betrayal and hauntings. I went this past Saturday. The day was overcast and extremely windy, as evidenced in the above photo. Situated on the sea, right across from Sweden, used as a fortress to fight against the Swedes, this Castle, is not very ornate (doesn't help that it burned down in 1629, from its original foundations of 1585 and King Christian the Fourth who rebuilt Kronborg had more minimalistic views on home redecorating). But with the waves crashing up against the rocks that punctuate the grounds, surrounded by an honest-to-God moat and with dark unlit low-ceiling rooms (in America we would call that a potential lawsuit), it had the very feel of a haunted castle. Plus they allow you to go into the dungeon, VERY creepy. They have this statue in the cellar there of this giant that Danish legend says will awaken should Denmark ever be attached from a foreign entity (though he slept through WWII). Since we never know what happened to Shakespeare in those missing years, it is possible he traveled to Denmark, because a more perfect location for his angst ridden Hamlet, I have yet to find!

The rest of the weekend was fun; went to a friend's birthday party on Friday night, where my hair did a dippity-don't, but what's new. Also on Friday I went to the Danish Immigration office to get my work permit sticker. Lord talk about the black hole of death, I spent all morning (hours) there just waiting to be called and once attended to, it only took five minutes. Isn't that always the case? Interestingly enough Denmark, like much of Western Europe continues to struggle with its immigration, namely Muslims from the Middle East. I don't know if maybe I'm a bit naive, but though we have our immigration problems in America, if you ask me, we are leaps and strides better than Europe in accepting and integrating immigrants into larger American society.

Finally capped off the weekend by heading for brunch this morning to a quirky cafe I found when coming back from the Immigration office on Friday. Its called the Laundromat Cafe, you can do your laundry and have breakfast at the same time - think a step up from the Waffle House (but not as cheap). I enjoyed it, though the pancake stack sizes were so small, like half dollars - we Americans got a hoot out of that. You can see what I'm talking about on their web page (warning its mostly in Danish).


Blogger Kate said...

Ok, I am like psychotically in love with that cafe. I'm so on my way to see you and you're going to take me there. I giggled with sheer delight the whole way through the 3d tour of the place. What a BRILLIANT idea!

Oh, and the castle looks pretty cool too.

6:58 AM  
Anonymous JoeInVegas said...

Laundry and breakfast. Sounds like you will have to work, if things are as expensive as you describe.

11:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dippity-don't - that's funny. And a reference you'd have to have a little age on you to get. I love castles.

7:11 PM  
Blogger shannon said...

I'm with Kate. If I wasn't in the middle of all this medical stuff, I'd be on a plane to come see you and go to that cafe. And the castle, too.
Come to think of it, I could afford a trip to see you if it wasn't for all the medical stuff. :)

Cookies are forthcoming, lady. I haven't forgotten, just been too busy stuffing my piehole full of brownies.

7:52 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

I'm on my way!

(wish wish hope hope)

Glad you're having fun!


7:55 PM  
Blogger Molly Malone said...

maybe some nazi spy snuck into the castle and shot the giant with massive tranquilizers before the attack on the Danes. but just you wait. i'm sure he'll awaken someday. and when he does, you'd better duck your ass and cover!

as far as immigration and acceptance. who knows? certainly immigrants get harassed here. however, as we are a country FOUNDED on immigration, and basically everyone here is only a few generations removed (if that) from immigrants, i'd like to think we're more tolerant than the older school homogenized societies of the West.
the cafe looks cute. but lets be on the level here: can you pick up a trucker as easily there as you can at the waffle house? doubtful. my opinion on the cafe, then: a waste of time! ;)

7:10 PM  
Blogger mommanator said...

you may not be able to pick up a trucker, but how's about some metro-sexual having to do his laundry while reading a great novel and sipping coofe.
Love the castle- I am always intrigued how these castles/building have remained for centuries, despite weather etc. todays contructions last a hundred years or so and become obsolete

9:01 AM  
Blogger Hina said...

oh wow, that is very cool chubbsy! Hamlet's castle! Did you break out into any quotes? Did you see any ghost? in an episode of the Simpsons, Homes plays the father, and does this whole Ghostbusters montage :p

2:41 PM  
Blogger Virginia Gal said...

Kate - come to Copenhagen and we will DEFINITELY go to the cafe, you would love it!

Joe - it is interesting, but the laundry section is not exactly next to the food section, so its not like you're eating your waffles and watching the rinse cycle, hee hee.

Citizen - oh I'm so glad someone got the dippity don't comment, I use it all the time and people give me puzzled looks often : )

Shannon - you crack me up, piehole full of brownies, I have a hard time imagining you stuffing yourself : )

Tony - As soon as you win the lottery, Denmark better be your first stop! Hugs

Molly - As usual you make me laugh out loud, with your trucker comment, sadly no you can't pick any up at the Landromat cafe, hee hee.

Mommantor - that is a good point, why is our new construction so shoddy compared to yesteryear, maybe its the materials we are using. Of course we build things MUCH faster than back than as well, maybe that has something to do with it? Interesting....

Hina - I didn't break out in any quotes but definitely thought of you. They do the play there every year, sadly I'll be gone by than, its in the summer. I would have loved to have seen it!

5:57 PM  
Anonymous jellykean said...

You went to Hamlet's HOUSE. sweet.

1:29 PM  
Blogger Virginia Gal said...

Jellykean - I thought of Ms. Polizen when going, LOL.

6:29 AM  

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