So I want to preface this blog with some history from last summer when I lived in Hawaii. Right before I went to Hawaii for the summer, it was fathers day in Los Angeles where the family and I were having some fathers day activities. We gave some gifts/cards to Dad but he also surprisingly delivered gifts to me and my brother, Ben. (If you don't know him by now, you can find him playfully spreading tomfoolery around UCLA area and Pasadena during the holiday season singing jingles). My dad gave us the book, The Secret, which I took with a grain of salt because he always seems to give us books or clothes. I left to airport without thinking twice about it. I started to read it on the plane and throughout my time in Hawaii. In reflection to the book (about creating positive outcomes with positive thinking/feelings), I couldn't be more suprised with what negative energy and dispair I approached life with. I believe I started to change my approach and therefore enjoy Hawaii and my fourth year at Oregon much more than expected. All this leads me to believe that it all is now secondary and subconcious thinking.

---> Fast forward to current København, Danmark. ---->
Nyhavn at Sunset - The vibrant tourist spot with restaurants, ice cream parlors, and plenty of pedestrians posted up to drink beer and kick it.

Expectations are something the Danish don't have an acute awareness for. This is why they were evaluated as the happiest country in the world. In addition to that ranking, they were just ranked by Business Week as the 11th best city to live in the world, along with consistent rankings in the Top 10 cities to live.

The entrance to the Frederiksberg Hospital by my home.

So far, in my experiences/adventures/quests, I have encountered very friendly and nice Copenhageners. One night I was asking for directions back to the metro and the two girls and one guy I was asking didn't want me to go home and said we had more partying to get done. They took me to some other bar/pub and had a couple drinks of wine over some good American based conversation. (They are facinated with US Pop culture, politics, economics, etc.) Everyone can speak English, so living here is not that big of a problem, conveience wise. I can say though it was first hard to differentiate Pork from Chicken filets at the supermarket without the words.

My classes are good, yet pretty basic. They are taught by one Austalian professor (Economics of Sport - SBUS455) and one American professor (Entreprenuership and Small Business - MGMT335). I plan on getting high marks in both classes as long as I study 5-10 hours per week, which is no problem. I actually like my Sports class alot, and the Australian accent really keeps me attentive (some of his sports vocabulary is unique and interesting. ie - Soccer Jersey = Footbal Kit).

Copenhagen is a beautiful and vibrant summer city. No one is overweight like in the states, but everyone drinks a shit load. It really is a lot like Oregon (Climate, people friendliness, drinking standards, bicycling lanes, etc.) It has been sunny and nice every day except one rain downpour. I went to the beach Thurs. and swam in the Baltic Sea. The sun sets around 11:30pm and rises again around 4:30am, so my sleeping schedule is much different here than back in Oregon. I usually have to sleep with my bandana, as a blindfold, and earplugs because a main street is right outside my room {LOUD!}. My room is cozy and decked out in IKEA furniture. I have a shared bathroom but no one lives in the other room so its all mine. I have a small kitchenette in my room and I have been dubbed the Chef of my hall.

Me Jumping into the Baltic Sea. Surprisingly, not as Cold as I though it would be.

On Thurs. July 3, the Summer program staff organized an International Dinner where every summer student would bring a dish from their home country. I talked with other Americans about what they would bring, Grilled Cheese, S'Mores, and Apple Pie were the favorites. I chose to make our family dish, which some of you know to be FRITO PIE. It was a great success as it was one of the only American dishes to be devoured within minutes. I had to improvise because I couldn't find Frito Chips here in Copenhagen, so I used tortilla chips. My hall mates and others within the building threatened me to make it again for just them because they loved it so much. The best dishes I had were from Russia, Poland, Germany, Peru, Italy, and Iceland. The Swiss chocolate that my friend brought was definatly better than any chocolate I've had.
----[Personal Note: FOODMASTER FLEX has some good recipes to bring back to the US.]-----

Our nights have been characterized with drinking at Kulørbar (Color bar) downtown which offers free beer from 11-1am ($12 cover charge). I am trying to make the most of my days and nights here. My friends are from everywhere, Swiss, German, Italian, Aussie, French, American, etc. (DISCLAMER - CERTAIN GERMANS CAN REALLY OUTDRINK ANYONE [but when in doubt, they will beat you]). One night a few of us went to the ABSOLUT Icebar. It was a small bar located in a nice hotel downtown, but was very enjoyful. A group of us Americans wanted to check it out because it will probably be the closest we get to a bar made of all Swedish Ice. They import all the Ice from Sweden (200km from the North Pole) and it showed in our cover cost of $30USD to get in with one free drink card. I keep mentioning the prices of everything in US dollars because the conversion to Danish Kroner is almost impossible for some one to do in their head and the cost of living here is unbelievable. The Danish government takes so much in taxes on everything sold, a reason that the quality of life here is so great. (Example - At 7Eleven, A Bottle of Coke, 33cl - about 12oz is sold for $3.69 where it's 20oz and $1.50 in Oregon)

Pictured: Jeff G. (NYC), Jeff D. (Minn.), Stephanie (Oregon), Stacey (Boston)
July 4th, 2008 - Nothing special happened like it does in the states. I missed the fireworks, the scorching heat, and BBQ's but got to party with some friends...

Pictured: Giulio (Italy), Jeff (NYC), Jeff D. (Minnesota)

On Sunday, July 6th, the summer students went on canal tours of the historic ports and canals of the city center and naval areas. I took pictures and enjoyed learning some history and heritage of Denmark/Copenhagen. It was relaxing and fun to check out these areas on a peacful and sunny Sunday.

As I said, living in Hawaii was a great experience and a lot of fun. The thing about Honolulu is that is overwhelming to think you are stuck in the middle of the Pacific and it is very hot during the summer months. Contrastingly, I enjoy Copenhagen living much more and could see myself living here longer than I ever did in Honolulu. So far, Copenhagen, Hawaii, Boston, Washington, and Oregon are the most beautiful and/or comfortable places I have ever visted or lived.

The Copenhagen Opera House. Famous architectural landmark.
Listening to: Jason Mraz - The Dynamo of Volition
We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things Album