Well, the day has finally arrived. I have to leave this wonderful country. I am sad to leave, but glad to be going home. I miss my wife, my sons, and even the cats. I am sure that the cats will not welcome me home; I will be taking up their side of the bed, and some of my wife’s attention away from them. I am sure that this will result in some incidences of reprisals, if you know what I mean.
Some last minute observations:
I am not sure what the Danish version of the ADA is, but it seems that they have a better handle on it than the US. I was living here for four weeks before noticed that there wasn’t a single sign in brail. Also I didn’t see a single building that was modified to accommodate a wheelchair ramp. I did see many people in wheelchairs, but their solution to access is quite different than in the States. If you’re handicapped in any way you just go up to the shop and press a button, the proprietor comes out and helps in any way they can. I saw a shop keeper bring out a large aluminum ramp, place it over the steps going into their shop and help a person into the store. They chatted for a while, the person browsed around then left. The shopkeeper simply picked up the ramp and put it in the back.
All the signs are in Danish. But they are willing to accommodate visitors who don’t speak or read Danish. For instance they have menus in the restaurants for other languages; you just have to request them. With ATM machines, once your card is put into the machine it gives you a choice of what language you would like to proceed with. I think it’s better than press 1 for English.
Television is not edited for language. I actually enjoyed watching a few American reality shows for a change, especially that one with the foul mouthed chef. “you’re a fucking bad cook” Sounds a lot better than “you’re a bleep bad cook” Reality indeed. Speaking of cussing, the Danes cuss in English. Apparently Danish is not as suitable for really foul language as English. Kind of makes one proud.
Danish television is not quite up to snuff. Not because I don’t speak Danish, and it’s not because a lot of the shows are American. It’s because they seem to keep a random schedule. Not only does the schedule seem random, but the programming seems to be random. Good shows, bad shows, it doesn’t seem to mater. Not only do never know what will be on at any given day or hour, but the programming seems to be random over any era. I watched MacGyver on Tuesday evening, the next week at the same time was the X-files, then the Man from Uncle from the 70s.
The Danes don’t view the human body quite the same as we do in the States. We Americans seem to have a mix of extremes between censorship and outrage over a nipple, and Las Vegas hedonism. The Danes view things differently. For example there is a popular comic couple here in Denmark who dresses in full body nude suits. The man wears a naked woman suit and visa-versa. They do a skit for a TV commercial, it’s all in Danish and I don’t have any idea what the connection is between a nude couple and cell phones. It took me probably three times watching the commercial before I noticed that they were wearing suits.
So tomorrow morning I will be leaving the land of great people, and cold wet weather. I will be returning to the land of great people and cold dry weather.
It will be good to be home.