Saturday, September 23, 2017

the inspiration for Disneyland

 I spent the day along the water. People go on boat tours, but my transit pass also included unlimited rides on the Harborbus aka superspeedy ferries.
 Everyone was out on the water today, including lots of tourists in these cute GoBoats.
I got off in the most touristy part of town and headed to Copenhagen's most famous attraction.
I was almost going to skip the Little Mermaid statue, until I read it had been a target for attacks over the years: doused with dye, beheaded. 

What kind of sick person politicizes a mermaid? Then I felt I had to go, as a feminist act.
There were a million people, with selfie sticks and worse. It was sad and hilarious at the same time.

I continued walking into Kastellet, the military compound, with its grassy lawns, windmills (just when you thought you'd finally gotten Danish vs Dutch straight!), and wedding photos.

It really is a lovely compound. Not a selfie stick to be found.
 This was one of two weddings I ran into.
I hopped a bus over to Stoget, a popular pedestrian mall. 
It was mobbed. People posing, shopping, singing.

Feeling overwhelmed, I ducked into the world's cutest cafe. 
Service was slow, but the tea was good, and besides, they had blankets.

Tivoli Gardens is the second oldest amusement park in the world, opened in 1843.
It was the inspiration for Disneyland, in case you're wondering about the Matterhorn, or the Hans Christian Andersen doll ride.

Tomorrow's the end of the summer season. After that, they switch to special events.
It's a pretty fabulous place, with more junk food than even I could eat. 
The sections are themed, with small cafes and gift shops and terrifying rides.
There are charming surprises too. 
I found a couple playing a marimba, near lights put up by Olafur Eliasson. And I loved the fact that this tea shop had a chandelier, right under the rollercoaster.
They have bands and a sound and light show and firepits where in true hygge fashion, you can gather with your friends and roast marshmallows. And just before midnight, spectacular fireworks.
 Like Beyonce concert fireworks.
 Truly dazzling.
 We were a really happy crowd, celebrating the last Saturday night of summer.
Change is in the air. Tomorrow I fly home to the States. I have a few last stops before I go, a few more thoughts on this question of happiness and which country does it best. But for now, just for tonight, let's savor the awe and wonder.