Sunday 31 December 2017

France to Denmark September 2017

Book 3

September 15, 2017 From Brittany France to Billund Denmark

8:30 AM Camaret - Our travel day started when the taxis arrived to take us to Quimper. I had ordered two vehicles for 7 passengers per vehicle thinking we needed the extra places to hold our luggage. The first taxi to arrive was just what I had ordered. The second was a very smart sedan. Somehow they managed to get all of us and our luggage settled and we headed to Quimper. We travelled the coast road (#70) moving along at approximately 100KPH. The destination for most was Gare Quimper.
Donna, Liz and I were to board train 8720 to Gare Montparnasse in Paris. We arrived as per schedule in Paris 15:04. We were to be at Charles De Gaulle airport at 17:35 for our flight to Billund Denmark, departing at 20:35. We had some time in Paris so Liz and I ran while Donna waited at the station with our luggage to a local art supply shop to purchase half pans for my new palette. It is difficult to get this at home in our local supply store and not worth enough to order it on line and have to pay delivery. All was well, they had them and I got what I needed and we ran back to the station for our bus to the airport. Liz travelled with us to the airport then headed off to her B & B where she planned to spend the night before heading home to Canada.

Donna and I spent some time travelling from one terminal to the other before finding where we had to check in for AF flt. # 1764 to Billund.
In Billund we were met by our very special friends and drove to their home in Marslet. It was great to be home in Denmark, once again.

September 16, 2017
Our home in Denmark is in Marslet. We are about 20 minutes from Aarhus. A lovely village and special to me as my Danish friends live there. I have been visiting Denmark since 1997...I think. Helle, Allan and family have become a very important part of my family. It is wonderful to have time with them. This visit was planned as just that, a visit to the family and friends. On our first morning we drove to Odder. Time to look at the buildings, do some shopping and stop to visit Jane. From Odder we drove to Mette's house. The sketch that I did below does not represent Mette and Rasmus's home. I think that the house is really about twice as long. From Mette's we drove to Alro Island. Jane and Henrik live on Henrik's family farm. We had time to visit the farm have a wonderful meal and meet the new members since our last visit of the family. 

September 17, 2017
"What do you want to do today?" Helle's question.  Allan had to walk into town and we were to meet him for lunch. Lilly was going to treat us to lunch. We shouldn't bring our purses! 
I am still in shock about what happened when we reached the Scout house. There in the yard stood all the girls who we had shared our Guiding with since 1997. They had been organized by Helle. Inger-Marie was there I was so pleased, so excited. Each girl and each leader had come with her husband and family. What more could you ask for. I am still pinching myself each time I think about this. Perfect! Anne-Marie had made a cake, one just like the one we had at our picnic in Upper Queens Park when they had come to Stratford, Ontario to visit us. So many good memories with these girls and leaders. Such long friendships. Girl Guides of Canada gave us the opportunity to meet this group and they have become family to me. 

Brunch was served and in the yard the children built a camp fire.  Each family brought something to add to the meal. Wonderful.  

This evening we were invited to Inger-Marie and Jens. When I had first met this group Inger-Marie was the leader and she had brought her group to Our Chalet in Switzerland.  Joelyn and I brought our Rangers there at the same time. As we left one of my girls asked,  "They invited us to come to a jamboree can we go?" That was it we went and our lives continued together. 

As you can see on the sketch book page dinner at Inger-Marie's was very special. Such a perfect evening walking down memory lane. Lilly & Elmer (I was at a party the night they got engaged) Helle & Allan (my Danish Family) Inger-Marie and Jens (who without Inger-Marie none of this would have ever happened) Christina and baby Teresa (Inger-Marie's daughter who was at our first meeting in Switzerland and granddaughter) and Donna and I. I can still hear the laughter and look forward to returning to Denmark.

Sept. 18, 2017
Today we visit Aarhus the capital of Jutland. A big modern on the go city. Our first stop was at the new library. An amazing building in the harbour where like all cities the world is changing. Now instead of big ships and loading docks Aarhus harbour has as its main attraction a is "The library of the future". This building is well used. Students, families, tourist like us, it has something for everyone and if you are in Aarhus you must take time to wander this Library of the Future. We should all have something like this in our cities.

Dokk1 or Dokken is a building, public library and culture center in Aarhus, Denmark. It is situated on Hack Kampmanns Plads in the city center by the waterfront next to the Custom House.

Our wandering took us along the harbour to see the amazing apartment buildings that look like huge iceburgs  then as it was getting time for lunch a lunch stop. Each visit to Denmark I must have my favourite Danish fast food. Havnens Perle an interesting restaurant in the harbour offered just that. Today we are having Franske (hot dogs), by the sea.
Then off to see what is in the shops down the pedestrian streets looking and yes a little shopping for my grandkids. I was also looking for licorice. Licorice is a favourite in Denmark and I agree, a great treat. In Stratford I buy licorice at The Buzz Stop on York Street. It is made by a company called Lakrids, yes it is from Denmark. I needed to find a store that sold it.
In a mall after asking several times we found just that a whole store that sold only Lakrids licorice.
My favourite is salt and caramel.

It was a beautiful sunny day and we enjoyed our time strolling. On the way back to Marslet Allan drove us through Deer Park a green area by the sea busy with people enjoying the weather.

Time to turn the book over and start down the other side. Nice thing about accordion sketch books.

September 19, 2017
Today we have been invited to visit Inger-Marie at her work. Inger-Marie is the centre chief of a very special retirement home. Welcome to 'The Betty Sorensen Parken' 
We had time for Inger-Marie to show us this beautiful accommodation, hanging on the side of a cliff looking down on the river, then lunch was served. I am sure you have heard of a Danish open face sandwich? If not you have missed out. Today our lunch of smorrebrod (smor = butter, smorre = spread, brod = bread). We were offered three different sandwiches. I chose pork, red cabbage and orange. The sketch doesn't do it justice it was so good and only eating one slice of bread makes you feel like you are having a light lunch :)) 
Back in Marslet the focus again is on food. Allan is cooking tonight. We are having steak, potatoes, bearnaise sauce....dinner is served!
After dinner we walked to the community centre where Helle shares time with other women sewing. They do all kinds of beautiful needle work while sharing an evening together. It was a nice night for a walk and let us see a little more of Danish life.

September 20, 2017
Today is Helle and Allan's anniversary. Celebrating in Denmark means lots of Danish flags. On your birthday you will be woken with a song and flags by your family. Decoration at any special times includes the Danish flag. 
Helle planned that today we would drive in the countryside and enjoy lunch by the sea, so off to Hov we went. Hov is a harbour where pleasure craft are docked. We purchased a sandwich and sat on a bench enjoying the sun and the sea. I sketched and Donna and Helle chatted. It was perfect. Our drive through the country after lunch gave me time to capture the rolling hills of beautiful Jutland. We stopped at Mette's for coffee and time to say goodbye to Ida. We will be leaving Jutland tomorrow for a few days in Copenhagen. 

Book 4
September 21, 2017
Off to Wonderful, Wonderful Copenhagen!
Allan will drive so we have the car in Copenhagen. It is not necessary but will give us a chance to see around Copenhagen this visit. We have been here many times so most of the things on the list for tourists in Copenhagen have been checked off.  (Allan said that taking the ferry is also less expensive then taking the bus when you have 4 people travelling together. I have taken the bus from Aarhus to Copenhagen before and it is a good journey, the bus goes on the same ferry, but taking the car was wonderful). 
Helle and Allan had packed a lunch for all so after our car departed the ferry in Odden on Zealand we found a picnic area at the side of the road and enjoyed another Danish meal. Seems we eat a lot and that is right we do. 
In Copenhagen our accommodation this visit was the Danhostel at Vejlands Alle 200. It is not the best location for visits to Copenhagen if you are walking but is located close to the airport and you can take public transit (metro and bus) near by. This Danhostel was chosen as it offered free parking. 
This evening we enjoyed the tourist life in Copenhagen, we took the sunset harbour cruise watched the flag lowered in the harbour and heard the gun salute. Dinner was fish and chips at Skipper Kroeu. A perfect day. 

September 22, 2017
Donna left us today she is off to England to visit friends. It has been quite the journey for her. France, Denmark now England. I will stay in Copenhagen and continue to enjoy the company of my friends before my departure on the 24th, home. 

Time to tour Zealand
We are going to drive out of Copenhagen and see what we can find. That is the total plan. 
In Rungsted we saw a sign for the Karen Blixen Museum. I knew that Karen Blixen author of Out of Africa was from Denmark but did not know about this museum. I have been to the Karen Blixen house in Nairobi a couple of times it was wonderful to have the opportunity to see where she came from and enjoy her Danish history. It certainly put a foundation to her Out of Africa story.
I will be heading to Nairobi and visiting the Karen Blixen House in November. 
We took time to enjoy the museum then walked in the gardens. Under this tree is the final resting place of Karen Blixen. This was a special find and I hope that you will put it on your visit to Denmark list. 

September 23, 2017
While planning my trip to Denmark I read on La Fe's facebook page  (an artist that I met on a International Watercolour tour in Turkey) that he had a painting or paintings in a show that was taking place in  Hillerod. I mentioned to Helle that if we were close I would be interested in seeing the show. Today we drove to Hillerod to find the show. On arrival we parked in a castle parking area. I couldn't believe this beautiful building was right next door to the show that we had come to see. 
When we tried the door at the building where the show was taking place it was locked. Come back after 1:00 it said. So what to do?
We decided to go to the castle. The castle is the museum of National History of Denmark. What luck. 
We spent a couple of hours wandering the castle visiting the history of each of the members of the royal family of Denmark. This is a very special museum as you not only get to understand how Denmark royals have moved around Europe but you get to experience this very special building. I would recommend if you are near Hillerod that you don't miss this museum.
After our visit to the castle we stopped for lunch at Leonora. A lovely restaurant situated on the property of the castle. Again I would recommend you including this in your itinerary. 

Now back to La Fe. We came to see his work and so we returned to where the show was taking place. It was certainly worth the drive, not including the discovery of the castle, to see this watercolour show. I left La Fe a note in the visitors book to say I had been to the show and enjoyed seeing his very special paintings. 5 star is La Fe. You can find him on facebook, you will be amazed. 

September 24, 2017
All good things must come to an end. This is the end of my visit to Denmark for 2017. I have found so many interesting things to show my travellers I will return to Denmark in 2018 on a
Going Places Together tour for women. 

I have been away from home since August 29, 2017 on this journey. It has been a very special one. With Anne-Laure and the workshop members in France I got to sketch each day something I have not been able to do before. It became an amazing habit and a special way to see the world. Urban Sketchers say "capturing the world one sketch at a time".  Wouldn't it be lovely if I could actually do that then share here with you. I hope you have enjoyed this journey.

If you followed me this far, thank you. I look forward to reading what you think about my sketch books and my journeys. 
This part of the Painting Brittany with Anne-Laure Jacquart has been added a year after the actual event. I will be adding more, working on getting my blog up to date. 
In Sept. 2018 I will once again travel to Denmark. This time on a tour for women to Scandinavia then an extension to Denmark and 3 nights in Iceland. 
I look forward to sharing. 
Yours in travelling, paint brush in hand.