The past three days have been jam packed with fun activities. My Strategic Communication class took a trip to the Western Denmark cities of Odense and Aarhus to get a taste of Danish life outside of Copenhagen. Our schedules were booked solid throughout the three days and it was a nice time to get to know the other people in my class, especially since we'll be spending even more time together in London in a little over a month. I'll try to make this simple.
We visited TV2, Denmark's most watched television station since 1990! It was much like the TV stations I have seen in the US but it seemed a lot less stressful. Monitors everywhere of course, but most of the employees there were getting paid to watch television all day; not a bad gig.
Also on Monday we had a short Hans Christian Andersen walking tour from a DIS professor that included visits to where the author lived growing up, the church where he was Christened, the insane asylum his grandfather was placed (now a nursing home, go figure), and other places he frequented during his time in Odense. After this tour we headed to Aarhus. At night we were left on our owns to walk around Aarhus and check out the relatively nonexistent nightlife of a Monday in February.
We visited the municipality of Aarhus and learned about how it was designated as the cultural capital of 2017 for Europe. It's hard to get any recognition in such a small country when everyone immediately thinks of Copenhagen as the only real city in Denmark, but the city is a really cool place from what I gathered in my time there. After the town hall tour, I got the chance to visit M2Films, the media firm in charge of making many of LEGO's commercials that are seen on TV throughout the world. The setup the guys at M2Films are working with is unreal, equipped with the latest Apple desktops and Adobe software. After this tour we headed to ARoS, an art museum in Aarhus that exhibits some very interesting pieces. The most well known aspect of ARoS is the rainbow panorama walk at the top of the building, but the next time you're in Aarhus I strongly recommend heading to the bottom floors to see the Boy and also the 9 Spaces. Give them a quick Google search to see the quirkiness of these art exhibitions. Tuesday saved the best for last, at least for this art non-aficionado. We headed to RaceHall for some good old-fashioned go-kart racing. All 35 of us or so raced on one huge track in a free for all for the ages. During the qualifying stage I managed to clock the best lap so I entered the main race with the pole position. Unfortunately, after losing some traction on the first lap and hitting some back of the pack traffic around lap 7, I could only hang on to a 3rd place finish in the 15 lap race. Not too shabby in a race of 35, though.
This day was mostly spent traveling and eating brunch and listening to a lecture at Aarhus University, but the highlight of today was a visit to the Jelling Stones, one of Denmark's most important monuments. It established the monarchy in Denmark, is the first mention of the name Denmark, and also established Christianity as the new religion of Denmark by the viking king Harald 'Bluetooth.' (The technology is named after him because he connected Denmark.) It's really just two mounds of grass and two big stones with runes on them but the story behind it is very cool. If you made it to the end, good for you! I probably would have stopped reading once I hit Day 2. Check out the pictures from our festivities on Facebook.