Another amazing day. Copenhagen, please stop winning me over.
Days like these make me want to stand outside and scream ‘I LOVE MY LIFE’ even in the rainy, cold and incessantly windy days like today.
Today I had the pleasure of sitting in good company while sharing life stories, life experiences and thoughts about life.
But back to Christiania’s birthday. Today Christiania turned 41. 41 years ago an amazing group of people decided they were fed up with the workings of the society in which they lived and instead of just talking about it, they followed through and claimed a piece of land as their own, to form a community of like minded individuals to share moments with; to create a new way of life for themselves and their future children.
Today was a celebration.
Also contributing to all the happiness and celebration today, Christiania is finally free. They finally secured the funds needed to officially buy the land from the government, securing Christiania’s future as a free, self governing society; a self governing society that has been functioning quite well for 41 years.
There was much to celebrate today.
Publically, Christiania’s birthday celebration was known around Copenhagen. Found inside Christiania there was good music, a plethora of free flowers (if you wished Christiania a happy birthday at the top of your lungs) and the relaxed good vibe atmosphere that attracts Danes and tourist’s alike.
Stepping foot into Christiania I was met by a man with a guitar and his friend singing songs. Walking along further I ran into a children’s magic show, which I stopped and viewed for a little while. As one woman disappeared into a trunk no sooner to be replaced by a man I was offered freshly baked bread with butter by a woman who looked just as happy to be sharing her bread as I was receiving it. I stayed for a little while longer and watched the over zealous children laugh and smile.
My friend Stef and I decided to continue on and explore the rest of the birthday celebration. I can’t explain it. Just good vibes to be found in every corner, people laughing, hugging, reminiscing, dancing, singing… you name it and Christiania provided the platform for many a good vibration. Walking around Christiania is one of my favorite things to do, specifically because of the people you come across. Everyone seems to be on the same page and will gladly take a moment or two to share their story with you. The feeling I get when I have a ‘Christiania’ day is like no other. It’s a magical experience. It’s a magical place.
While walking around, many a person came up to me, wishing me a happy birthday and I was even lucky enough to receive a flower! I lovely purple flower! It was wonderful! I love flowers!
After walking around and enjoying the many tunes, I decided to stop by Marios’ (the painter) to introduce stef to him. He was of course outside painting another stunning piece of artwork. His Greek friend who I had met preciously was also there. Like an old friend, he ushered us in behind his iron gate and offered us seats around his table with his other friends.
I had the pleasure of meeting and listening to a 50 year old man from California. I had the pleasure of meeting two men from Copenhagen. I had the honor to sit and listen to them share their stories with me for at least an hour (I wasn’t keeping track of time). How wonderful it is to consciously make the time to put myself into a situation and have conversations with people that I wouldn’t normally have. How blessed I am to listen to another’s human experience and have them effortly listen as I share my story as well. Every time I am granted one of these experiences I gain insights to life that I would have spent years searching for in the states. Christiania provides that mysterious platform for discourse I never would have imagined possible.
Halfway through our exchange I had the pleasure of meeting James, someone more my age and apparently a really good skater from California. After exchanging stories with each other, Stef and I realized that we needed to head off to the filmhouse, or we would be late for our movie. James was headed out into the city and offered to show us Christiania’s skate park. I had no idea about this place so I took him up on his offer and I am so glad I did.
On our way to the skate park I stumbled across many bountiful baskets of flowers. I saw a gorgeous sunflower’s yellow petals through the mass of flowers and asked the people standing around how much it would be for me to add that gorgeous part of Earth to my tiny bouquet of purple flowers. They said all I had to do was answer a simple question. What was today? I replied with enthusiasm ‘Christiania’s Birthday of Course!’ and proceeded to exclaim loudly, ‘HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHRISTIANIA! They handed over the gorgeous mass of yellow and as I added it to my bouquet I replied ‘tusind tak’ (a thousand thanks) and continued on my way with James to the skate park.
This inside SkatePark was quite the cool hangout. He seemed to know most of the people as he frequently skated in Christiania. He introduced us to some of his friends and gave us a show. I’ve never actually been to a SkatePark or watched anyone pick up a skateboard before, so Jame’s show was quite entertaining. He is quite good. Skate Parks are in no need of explanation, and we were quickly off to the Huset’s Biograf to see some films.
This Film House is the one I have been searching for all my life. The cosy atmosphere, the perfect amount of people, the location right in central Copenhagen, the movie posters everywhere! What a perfect place for me! If I were to ever own a business it would be a film house mirroring this atmosphere found at the Husets Biograf.
We were going to watch two films:
19:00 Școala Noastră / Our School (2011) Mona Nicoară
21:00 Être et Avoir / To be and to have (2002) Nicolas Philibert
I’ve never cried so much during a film before than during the first film. And that is all I will say. I’m thinking of using this film in further academic research of mine. I will not say anything further as not to spoil your experience. They both come with high recommendations from me as well as Sun Dance (so don’t just take my word that it is simply a moving picture).
The Film House was like I said, amazing and I snapped a few quick shots with my camera phone. I apologize for the quality.
I also managed to take a list of the rest of the films’ being offered at the FilmHouse. I will be going back again and again… this may be my newest favorite spot in Copenhagen (I swear it changes every week).
Stef and I chatted about the films for a little while after leaving the film house, with another classmate of ours that we met during Orientation. We decided it was best to cycle home, after declining a bands invitation to come listen to them play (some band members were outside smoking a cigarette before their set and suggested we have a listen… on another night I might have, but I really was quite tired after being up with the workers this morning. I apologized and immediately regretted it as I cycled away during their first song. They had a black keys/ even jazzier feel to their style. I was really digging it. But I cycled home instead.
It was a nice cycle. It finally stopped raining and surprisingly there was no wind… even on Amager. Perfect end to a pretty perfect day.
The people you meet.
People you meet.