06 July 2008

Pickled Herring is Addictive

So, yesterday was my sight-seeing day that I alloted for myself. I took the train to Helsingør a day before, and yesterday, I trooped all the way to the castle that was located at the corner of the town.

The castle opened at 10:30, but I was there an hour earlier. I used the time to stroll around the battery, take pictures of the sea shore that the castle had, among other things. The castle was not a romantic location as Shakespeare's play alluded, rather, it was an imposing block of architecture sitting on the Øresund, whose primary task was to collect Sound Dues from passing ships back in the days. Still, it was a good subject for taking photos.

So that was my day yesterday. I ate out, tasting fine Danish fare. I liked their salmon pate, their pickled shrimp, their rye bread, and yes, the pickled herring. It was the most amazing thing I ever tasted. I suppose I could eat that as a staple, and I really do not get why other people are grossed out by it.

Anyway, today, I set out from my hotel early to take the train to Odense. Now here is the piece of advice that I have for people if they are traveling by train within Denmark. If you know your travel days in advance, try to buy a ticket in advance if you can, since the ticket station is not always open in your convenient hour. There are vending machines for the tickets, but they may not sell the ticket that you want. My experience emphasizes that point.

I needed to buy a ticket from Helsingør to Odense. It was long-distance, and the whole trip needed about 3 hours. However, when I got to Helsingør station at around a few minutes past eight in the morning, the ticket office was closed. The vending machine was working, but the instructions were in Danish, and no English. And they were only selling tickets up to Copenhagen. The ticket office opened only at 10:00 AM, so it ended up that I waited in the station for about an hour and a half before I was able to buy a ticket.

Now I remember the lady who sold me the ticket to Helsingør a few days ago when I was still in the airport. She asked whether I only wanted a one-way ticket to Helsingør. I said yes, because I don't want round-trip, I did not need to get back to the airport after Helsingør, I needed to get to Odense instead. So I didn't buy extra tickets back then.

But, if I had known that I could buy tickets for other days, for other directions, then I could have taken my trip to Odense this morning earlier, and that would have made my life easier.

But, there is a first for everything. That is simply how life is. Anyway, I am here right now in Syddansk Universitet, and tomorrow, the workshop will commence. I am experiencing dormitory living for the first time, and surprisingly, I think I like it.

With two other students, we explored our surroundings this afternoon. Like most universities, this university is located in the middle of nowhere (yes, Buffalo is like that too, except that this one is more dramatically nowhere). But, the scenery is nice, and given the nice weather, I would not mind the long walk from my dormitory to the school. My only challenge is avoiding the tons of horse shit that is scattered around the walkways. After all, I am staying at the dormitory of the agricultural school, so what can I expect?

(The Indian Trail, from my Watkins Glen Series)


  1. My goodness... and you're in Europe now! I've never been to Denmark or in any of the scandinavian countries. I was in Netherlands for two weeks in 2001 or 2002 and I remember that I loved their herring (their own streetfood) which I ate almost everyday. Enjoy your workshop! How exciting to be in the middle of nowhere. :)

  2. Toe,

    Oo nga, minsan nasa South America, minsan nasa Europe! Baka bukas nasa Asia naman...