Monday, December 1, 2014

Finding fall.

About a month or so ago, David and I were sitting around one weekend feeling a little discontent with how the seasons have been progressing recently.  The mild temperatures and long days of summer had given way to clouds and rain and early sunsets, but we still had a ways to go before Christmas cheer brightened things up, and it kinda felt like we were missing something...something comes between summer and Christmas.  Something that makes the transition to shorter days easier; something that has squash and football and warm spices and apple cider.  Something that is usually one of my favorite parts of the year.

So we got off our butts because clearly we needed some fresh air and went for a walk outside, and we found it!

Crunching through the leaves in
Mølleparken, near our house

Yes, that wonderful in-between season...fall.  When it's cool enough that you can turn on the oven again and bake pumpkin cookies.  When the most delicious-sounding dinner is a squash soup.  When you can spend all weekend watching football and football and then more football.  Aaaahhhhh.  What we needed was more fall in our lives.  

Except, well, we couldn't find any apple cider in the grocery store and football games are on at all the wrong times here and...I have to go to work on Thanksgiving?!?!

Ok, ok, I'm being super dramatic.  But all that to say that it seems fall is the time when I've most missed some uniquely American things.  

But fall was still to be found in Denmark.  The Hokkaido pumpkins they sell here at the grocery store make really good pies.  Fantasy football is, fortunately for me, an online game.  And the sun, while not a frequent visitor, does still show up sometimes.

On a miraculous warm Saturday in November, we rode our
bikes to Lundby Bakker, a forest area southeast of Aalborg.

And we manage to enjoy even the gray, depressing Saturdays, but that's not too hard when you spend them at place with all this...

Creepy 5 meter tall boy;
David finds meaning in the room full
of random stuff (aka the art exhibit);
Fun with mirrors!

All this is at ARoS, the contemporary art museum in Aarhus, Denmark's second-largest city.  Aarhus is a quick 1.5 hour train ride from Aalborg, we've been there twice so far, and we'll definitely be back.

On our first trip there (back in September), we experienced the Aarhus Festival where, among other things, we watched the so-called King of Smørrebrød make his specialty which we then got to eat (and wash down with free snaps).  

A visit to ARoS was the primary purpose of our second trip, and it did not disappoint.  These people know how to put together an art exhibition.  Some exhibits were thought-provoking while others were just fun.  An entire room filled with smoke lit up in different colors where you can't see more than a foot in front of can you not like modern art??

Walking along "Your Rainbow Panorama"
the 360 degree viewing platform/modern art piece
that sits atop ARoS.

Fun times in the smokey room

Most important fall moment of all...we successfully introduced the wonders of pumpkin pie to many who had previously been unacquainted with its awesomeness.  On Thanksgiving, I brought in a couple pies and some whipped cream to work.  It was all sitting on the table at lunchtime, and as people came into the lunch room, I hear again and again "Hvad er det?".  Fortunately, that's a Danish phrase that I understand so I could excitedly explain the day's importance and the necessity (in my mind) of the pie on the table.  While some co-workers seemed a little suspicious at first, I think my enthusiasm got them to at least try a slice (and they're all just nice anyway).  But it was no surprise to me that they actually liked it...I's pumpkin pie...who wouldn't?

Not only that, we successfully made all traditional Thanksgiving foods and celebrated my most favorite of American holidays all in another country...with a major shout out to our Team Danish Thanksgiving friends Bailey and Daniel (fellow Americans learning to navigate the land of smørrebrød and snaps).  But I will say that I missed sharing with that pie with those who appreciate it the most.  Like my mom who complains every Thanksgiving that I make too big of a mess in her kitchen and leave it all for her to clean up but who raves every year that my pie is the best.  Shout out to my fam-bam this week...couldn't stop thinking about you all as I made the pies this year.  Missing you lots!

1 comment:

  1. Happy that you found fall :-) We had a very warm fall this year. What about the runny noses? I am on it at week 4 now (and seeing the doctor tomorrow morning).
    Thanksgiving which is in its heart an American thing is also catching on to us Danes - Black Friday has arrived. I wonder if Thanksgiving itself will also be part of our new traditions soon (like Valentines Day).
    Oh - still working on the PhD, but would be great to meet up with you guys soon again :-)
    Knus og kram,