Days 17 and 18: From Gilding to Sewage – Danish Hotels are Odd

We woke up in the morning and made a quick trip to the church (seriously…did you expect me to pass one up that is open???) along with a trip to the local Viking museum. The museum was interesting because it was a museum build directly upon the ruins of the Viking settlement. There were lines on the floor that outlined exactly where the prior settlement buildings had been, including the remains of a murder victim! After this we checked out of our hotel.

Fun hotel fact: our hotel had the oldest elevator in Northern Europe – and it was a Kone elevator! One thing I love about this trip is just how much more in-tune I am to the products of the companies we visited, especially since I would normally never have paid attention to who made the elevator I was riding in!!

After checking out of our hotel we headed to the ferry to take a ride back to Zealand island. Despite not having any of Anna’s wonderful anti-nausea meds (thanks again, Anna!!) I did OK until the very end when, upon the ship doing a pretty quick 180 to line up with the dock, I got pretty queasy and green. Upon getting off the ferry in Odden (or Odde depending on what map you look at) we started driving. Ben, knowing what I love, saw a cute little roadside church and we stopped in. Come to find out, this was one of the churches in a brochure on roadside churches I had found on our first day in Denmark! Located in Overby, it was a very cute little church with a lovely graveyard. Something I found again in this church was a ship hanging from a ceiling. Apparently this custom is common in churches that are comprised of many seafaring parishioners – it is meant as a reminder to continually pray for their safe return.

We finally made our trip to Roskilde where we first stopped at the Viking Ship Museum. It was really cool! Centuries ago the citizens of the town sunk five different Viking ships in the harbor as a means of defense. They were excavated in the 1960s and are now in the museum. To get back to the purpose of this trip, supply chains, let me tell you – these ships embody that concept! Every single ship was made somewhere different in Scandinavia and every single one was used for various types of commerce – trade, raiding, simple transport between two places. Coming as far away as Ireland these ships WERE the supply chain during their times. Considering how much we’ve studied the benefits of train, plane, and boat it is interesting to think that for a 1000 years the same mode of transportation has essentially been the cheapest and most reliable – ships. This was something that I definitely took for granted on this trip and I’m hope I have a greater appreciation going forward.

After this we made our way to the Cathedral, thinking that we might have a chance to peak in for 5 minutes before they closed. As luck would have it, they were open until 6pm so we had a full hour to wander. Not surprisingly, this wasn’t enough time for me! Smilie: :-) What made this cathedral more interesting than some is that this is where the monarchs of Denmark are buried. Holy ostentatious Batman! These coffins/crypts were elaborate and, most of the time, gaudily over the top! Though this trip led to a breakthrough in my relationship with Ben: upon his death I am never to put him on display in a glass egg-shaped coffin. For anyone wondering where this revelation came from: this is how the current Queen will be displayed upon her death. I have no desire to ever go back to Denmark but I just might to see this after her death.

Random site note: I think I really took for granted how great it was that everything in Scandinavia had English plaques at all major tourist sites. Unlike Guatemala or Turkey (my last vacas) it was nice to be able to wander at my own pace and not have to pay for a guide at every interesting place so that I could get the full tourist information. It definitely made me sad that more of my high school Spanish and college German language classes did not make an impression.

We grabbed a bite to eat at a top rated restaurant near the Cathedral (or top rated in Lonely Planet) and made our way to our hotel. Ahh….our hotel. We walked in our room and the first thing we noticed was the sewage smell. Yes…sewage. There was something screwy with the plumbing. Luckily, we turned on the water to wash our hands and between that and the soap we used the smell greatly dissipated (and this hotel had two doors between the bathroom and the main room so we could just shut the door and open a window and be just fine). We figured that no one had used our room for awhile so we didn’t make a stink, mainly because of the view. OMG was the view gorgeous! Our room looked out at the sun setting over the Roskilde Fjord. We went out on the bar patio for one final drink to take in the view before we headed to bed.

The next day was a little eventful. We had to stop for gas and this was when not having a PIN for our credit cards really caused problems – we couldn’t use the self-serve stations because we couldn’t pay for the gas! We had to drive around until we found a station with an attendant and even then had to guess as to how much gas to pump and ended up having to use a debit card. Luckily this was the only time the stupid Chip and Signature cards didn’t work. We got the car delivered to the airport though a little later than we’d planned due to the gas station dilemmas and then got into the craziness of the check-in line. Of course we got in the wrong line and had problems checking in (none of my credit cards would bring up my ticked and I had problems connecting to the WiFi to get my confirmation number in the email) and I had to pay extra because I was 10 pounds over and they wouldn’t let me take anything out because then all the other bags would be too heavy and we’d not be allowed to bring them on the plane. Ugh…. After all of this bag craziness I’m not too keen on SAS airlines right now. Luckily we made our flight with only about 10 minutes to spare and the flight back was uneventful. Home was so great – I didn’t realize how much I missed my dog and cats until I hadn’t seen them in 2+ weeks. I am not looking to work tomorrow but all good things……..

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