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Adventuring, Europe

Oh it’s beer beer beer… Denmark edition


Okay I promise I have a number of substantial posts ready to go, but they’re all on my iPad and I’m having Internet issues with the durn thing so here’s another from the phone:

I arrived in Copenhagen Sunday morning after taking an overnight train from Amsterdam. I thought I would be bored from a 16-hour ride – especially because I didn’t have a book – but it turns out two crazy days in Amsterdam can tire you out enough to sleep well over the normally allotted time.

Adventure number one in Copenhagen was journeying to accommodations – I’m staying with my friend David, and we decided to do the long walk back so I could see some of the city. Adventure number two was taking a shower because after 16 hours on a train in my PJs and then wearing said PJs for a 90-minute walk I no longer felt like a real human being. But then we got to adventure number three, which involved beer and band geeks so you know everything has to be good.

We went to Visit Carlsberg, the original brewery for Carlsberg beer. Now apparently Carlsberg is the fourth bigger brewer in the world and they distribute in North America, but to be honest I had never heard of them. We did the general self-guided tour – which came with two beers! – and then went to a tasting.

One cool part of the guided tour was the room with the large collection of unopened beer bottles. David wasn’t particularly happy about it:

However, we discussed that, should the world encounter a nuclear holocaust, either 1) the aliens would have an excellent record of human culture from around the world incorporating multiple senses (my I-used-to-teach-a-library-resources-class POV) or 2) the last man on earth would have an awesome party (David’s Irish POV).

The tasting itself was in a subterranean room underneath the stables. Yes, they had horses. We went down a long staircase to reach the former fermenting rooms, where we passed by a “bathroom” formerly used to hide a Danish spy operation during World War II. There were all sorts of statues around the room, including a quite intimidating one of the founder of the company.

Alongside the two of us was a pair of Italian guys and a fellow American from Seattle named Adam. Game of Thrones was discussed as we tried three different types of beer and learned more about the history of brewing in Denmark.

After we powered through the three beers, David and I went upstairs with Adam to claim the remaining free beers we got with our admission. At some point, Adam and I realized that we both did college marching band. And, as obligatory to this kind of situation, David became invisible as Adam and I started to reminisce about our respective marching band experiences. It was a fond reminder that no matter where I go in the world I will find people with whom I can hold conversations that completely shut out all other (normal) human beings.

We ended the evening at an Irish pub (of course). On a guided tour i took later in the week, I reheard the story of Carlsberg, and in the few days I’ve been here, it’s safe to say that the main thing I’ve learned is that the Danes like their beer.



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