Leaving a Life Lived Abroad | The Emotional Toll of Repatriation

What does it feel like to walk away from a life lived abroad? Simply put? A lot. Today marks 18 months since we boarded a plane back to the US. After seven years of living as a Scandinavian – Oregon is seeping back in, getting under my skin. I’m embracing the spaces, places, and people we missed. I won’t sugarcoat it, there have been overwhelming moments, days, and maybe whole months of deep grief. Someone remind me next winter that this time of year is just as difficult here as it was in Denmark. I don’t believe in ignoring those hard feelings and I let them wash in. Safe in my experience that those tides (eventually) roll back out.

I’ll admit, I thought I’d be further along by now. Still, I’m squarely in the middle of processing my move “home.” But Copenhagen was home too. For seven years. So from the beginning, the emotions are complicated and twisty. Let’s get into it. But first, let’s start with the definition of repatriation.

Continue reading “Leaving a Life Lived Abroad | The Emotional Toll of Repatriation”
Reasons to Come to Copenhagen in the Winter | Oregon Girl Around the World

Reasons to Visit Copenhagen in Winter

Copenhagen Offers Cozy Culture to Combat the Dark in Winter

REASONS IT IS WORTHWHILE TO CONSIDER A VISIT TO THE CAPITAL IN COLDER MONTHS

Did you see it? Yesterday? The first snow of the new year? Copenhagen woke to a powdered sugar coating of the white stuff. Winter in the capital. Personally, I adore it when there is snow on the ground and sun in the sky. And winter is a delightful time to visit Denmark. Don’t let the short days and dark nights dissuade you. The Danes do it right when it comes to winter. Continue reading “Reasons to Visit Copenhagen in Winter”

Copenhagen’s Topless Sandwiches | Best Places to Taste the Smørrebrød

From classic spots to modern restaurants, what to expect at an authentic Danish lunch.

Come to Copenhagen, she said. And take your top off. Your sandwich at least. Here, the ubiquitous lunch dish is called smørrebrød – a Danish open-faced sandwich – and scandalous it’s not. Copenhagen is a tasty town try a piece or two, or more. Offerings of these gorgeous sandwiches washed down with carefully curated and house-infused snaps will convert the curious.

And whether you prefer the old-school vibe of an iconic café or the upscale design aesthetic of a more modern restaurant – the Danish capital has you covered. But you should still don your own top. I’ll share some smørrebrød etiquette, what to expect on menus, and where you can try it. Come along and see what you’re missing. Skål! Cheers. 

Continue reading “Copenhagen’s Topless Sandwiches | Best Places to Taste the Smørrebrød”

10 Ways to Make the Most of Christmas in Copenhagen

Jul love Christmas in the Danish capital.

When living in Denmark. I say. Bring on Christmas.

It’s November now. The clock has turned back and the dark descends earlier each evening. By Christmas, it’ll be down to a mere seven hours of daylight per day around Denmark. No need to fret. Don’t be concerned. Bust out your candles and spark on those fairy lights. Let’s get our Jul on. It’s one of the things I adored most about living in Denmark. And Danish Christmas activities kick off quickly – the first Friday of November – with J-Dag and the delivery of julebryg, or Christmas beer all over Copenhagen. Soon the Julemanden, Denmark’s version of Santa, will illuminate the streets with stars, hearts, and twinkles swathed above this pretty city’s historic center. Continue reading “10 Ways to Make the Most of Christmas in Copenhagen”

Copenhagen Color: Where to Get Your Autumn On

Best Places to Find Fall Color in Copenhagen

A Self-Guided Bicycle/Walking Tour of Autumn Foliage and Danish Café Hygge

Fall is fantastisk in Copenhagen. Deciduous trees that dominate the landscape start changing colors to blend perfectly with the classic Scandinavian architecture. The Danish capital is suddenly coordinated in rusty reds, earthy ochres, and burnt oranges. This town is built for autumn. The long Nordic summer days slowly get shorter as they slip into my favorite season, even as the light lingers less and the air turns cool. Pull on a sweater. Or a jumper, if you’re British. Definitely bring layers and something to stave off the very real potential for rain. Fall can be crisp like a tart Danish apple, famous from the island of Fejø, ripe and ready to pluck.

But it’s not always rainy. Here, autumn can come sometimes sunny and bright. In Danish, there is a name for that hybrid season as summer turns to fall – known as sensommer. And it can be sublime. Come soak it up. And if the weather wanes, as it is wont to do in Denmark, you can enjoy the season change from inside one of Copenhagen’s many cozy cafés and delicious craft coffeehouses.

Originally posted September 2019, updated September 2022

Continue reading “Copenhagen Color: Where to Get Your Autumn On”