Today Sunday (22nd) it's raining again, but the forecast is for a dry day with more rain tonight. Yesterday after a wonderful night's sleep in Gentofte, Anne-Margaret took us in to a see a food fair at Norre Bros, an area which has been rundown but is coming up again. Two bus rides brought us to the district, but very little sing of a food fair... Eventually we found a few stalls selling sheeps wool, home-made hand creme and shampoo, some nice little potatos, artisan bread and cheese. It was very noticable how many young families and little children there were around. We had a coffee and observed a police bus, lying in wait for any trouble which might attend the Gay Pride march which was due to pass through later on. We also spotted a childrens' playground consisting of a crashed aeroplane, with a slide inside the fuselage. There were some wrecked boats a little further on, slewed crazily into place on the concrete. Nice.
Home to prepare for the big party... shower, hairdo, etc. The drive up to Espaergaerde is absolutely stunning, an old beach road probably thousands of years old but now naturally enough filled with pretty houses and smart hotels and spas. The view across the water to Sweden is breathtaking. This must be one of the most beautiful places on the planet.
Chris and Bente's house sits about 20 clicks up from Copenhagen, almost into Helsingor (Hamlet's Elsinore), right on the beach with a broad garden around it and a deck on the first floor so that when you are inside you might almost be on a ship. It is divine.
They got ready, we piled various necessary things into the cars and headed to the party place, with Chris leading the way but getting lost. The party was in an old farmhouse (Egegaarden = Oak Farm), and was a great great success. People gathered from all over Denmark and the UK and Ireland... One I had not seen for 45 years... Fionon (sp?) who used to work with Chris at UMIST. He, like a few others there, had been sailing.. Denmark must be a marvellous place to sail with so many islands and almost no tide. At least, very good with good weather... there was a horrible sailing accident in the last few days, with 6 Danes in a boat which overturned in the storms.. 4 missing, one swam 7 miles to get help. His face, and the one he pulled to safety on an island, have been on the front pages of the newspapers for the last few days. Not reading Danish we had not realised what the story was.
We drank, ate, sang, hurrahed in the Danish style, danced, heard speeches, picked up broken glass from the floor, had long conversations with long-lost buddies.... it was all lovely. The only people missing were the farmers who had seized the chance of a relatively dry day to work. They have had a terrible time, with so much rain and now frantically seizing any chance to bring the crops in.
My cousin Emma leads a terrific band, and they gave us set after set, real cool music. I also loved hearing Bente's friend Marianne singing.. she is half Inuit and comes from Greenland. A wonderful deep voice.
Today we are going back to Chris and Bente's house for lunch (left-overs) and more talk. I tried to record some of the funny songs last night so maybe we can listen to those.
One very good thing was being able to talk to John, who faces more surgery for cancer this week, but was looking fantastic and talking very openly about things. I am glad he is taking Juice Plus... I thought he might have stopped but he tells me he is taking it every day.
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