There Might Be Vikings

My Semester in Denmark

Week 9 

This week felt very different from the others, perhaps best characterized by the phrase “hurry up and wait.” There was a huge rush to get Grace shopper deployed by Wednesday morning, followed by a lull for the rest of the day while we waited for others to finish presenting and then took our final quiz of grace hopper (which, at this point, didn’t feel like a huge deal since we have been practicing all of our tools very intensely). 

On Thursday, we started ‘stackathon’, which is a two-day hackathon where you can work independently or in pairs on whatever you want. I had been planning to try something very ambitious for it, but at the last minute I decided to do something fun instead. I have been working (Thursday, Friday, and through the weekend) on an iPhone app that helps you learn different languages. The app lets you take a picture, and then it suggests tags for that picture in the foreign language of your choosing using image recognition software. It then generates flash cards based on the image, so that you can carry around a deck of clash cards based on what you have seen that day. The app runs on ionic, which allows you to write apps in JavaScript (very cool but hard to debug)! I will try to share some version of it on here soon. 

Farewell Post

I was going to do something long and involved with pictures, but then I lost my camera cord apparently. SO I’ll stick with a cliche Winnie-The-Pooh quote.

How lucky I am to have had something to make saying goodbye so hard. 

Also, lots of big scary bugs have started popping up all over Hillerød, and in a way I’m glad to be leaving before those take over. 

What I have learned from Søren Kierkegaard

Study for your final exam or do not study for your final exam, you will regret it either way. 

Wise words from one of Denmark’s three famous people. 


So I pretty quickly figured out how to make a ø and an å on a mac keyboard. But I’m proud to say that, after living in Denmark for four months, I have finally figured out (competely by æccident) how to make an æ. Just in time to never need it ægain. But. I though I should share. It’s option + ” if you’re interested. Æbler. Kærlighed. Være. Frederiksværksgade. 

Happy Jesus Fly Away Day

Today is a holiday in Denmark. I think It’s called “Ascension Day,” but someone translated it for me as “Jesus Fly Away Day” and I like that better. 

All businesses in Denmark are closed for Jesus Fly Away Day. Which is inconvenient when you want to go buy some study snacks at Netto. 

They close businesses a lot more in Denmark than in the US. Maybe they don’t feel the need to work as much because they’re not worried about starving or not getting healthcare because they have such a strong welfare system here. Maybe not. 

Adventures in Trying to Do Architecture

Adventures in Trying to Do Architecture

Confusion and lots of wasted paper (and wasted time taking selfies on photobooth) are abundant as finals period draws closer.

So im posting this from my phone, and i can’t enter text in the main text area for some reason so heres a crazy long title: Barcelona was sunny and warm and cheap compared to copenhagen which isn’t saying much. Now i’m in my hotel in paris which seems really cool but the frenchpeople smirk when they realize i can’t speak french.

Some Danish Pictures

So I realized there are a lot more pictures of places that aren’t Denmark than pictures of Denmark on this blog. I think I should try to change that, since I’m living in Denmark after all! Here are some pictures of a bay in Svanemøllen, a suburb of Copenhagen that I pass on the train every day. I’m supposed to design a sauna house for this area as an assignment in my architecture class, so I took some pictures. It’s rather beautiful, I think!


Blurry Pictures and Pen Scribbles

I know I’ve posted about Rome twice already, but I still need to do my standard pictures-and-captions post.

Here’s the thing though. I was pretty convinced that everything I brought to Rome with me would get stolen by tricky Roman pickpockets (nothing did; I had a system), so I decided not to bring my nice camera. Instead I brought my crappy wal mart camera that you have to hold really still or else the picture gets all blurry, since I figured if the pickpockets accidentally stole that they’d take one look at it and give it back.

So basically the pictures are extra-mediocre this time, but I’ve picked out the ones that came out the best. Also I’ve decided to supplement it with some of my sketches. The DIS architecture program really emphasizes sketching, and while I resented it when I was forced to sketch on the Germany/Netherlands tour, since this was a non-architecture tour and no one was forcing me, I actually found it rather enjoyable. I figure it’s more personal than a photo, if in the end just as mediocre (forgive my abysmal perspective and the fact that I basically just scribble so mistakes look intentional.)

The Pantheon and tourists. I want you to get an idea of the disgusting number of tourists in Rome. (I know I was part of the problem.)

The Pantheon and tourists. I want you to get an idea of the disgusting number of tourists in Rome. (I know I was part of the problem.)

This is Michelangelo's first Pieta. Can you see it? No, me neither, because its trapped behind a sea of tourists who don't even know what they're looking at (residual snobbish anger) (I did, of course, push my way to the front and get a decent look, but it was still behind glass which was annoying but I guess necessary.)

This is Michelangelo’s first Pieta. Can you see it? No, me neither, because its trapped behind a sea of tourists who don’t even know what they’re looking at (residual snobbish anger) (I did, of course, push my way to the front and get a decent look, but it was still behind glass which was annoying but I guess necessary.)


Seeing THE Laocoon peeking through the grass in the sculpture garden of the Vatican was one of the most exciting things to happen in my art history major career


In the words of our instructor, “I believe this building needs no introduction.” I was there.


I walked by this an embarrassing number of times before I realized it was Borromini’s Saint Carlo alle Quattro Fontane. #sorryEJ


After a long quest for the mediterranean, we finally found it in a random suburb of Rome.


A Statue of Voldemort in Castel St. Angelo


Rome has all these drinking fountains that are apparently not as janky as they look


A drawing of an arch at the Roman Forum. (Rome is lousy with arches)


Ruins of the Temple of Saturn at Ostia, an ancient Roman trading center that is very well preserved because (this is when I stopped paying attention).


An ancient public restroom where the Ostians sat, side by side, rich and poor, young and old, male and female, and took care of business.


This is the poet Keats’s Grave. What I thought was really weird was that Keats’s grave didn’t have his name on it, but the grave next to it, for some guy named Joseph Severn, was literally all about Keats. It said Severn was Keats’s “deathbed companion,” and even though he died some 50 years later, he chose to be buried next to Keats, along with his infant son. But not his wife or anything. It really didn’t make sense. So I did a quick sketch to remind myself to google it and find out who this Joseph Severn guy was and why he was so obsessed with Keats, but of course I have yet to google it.


One of the windows at Michelangelo’s Capitoline Hill, a really inspirationally beautiful space. I jotted down something that I thought was pretty poetic at the time, but I’m not bothering to type it out because it’s not even close to historically accurate and when it comes to Michelangelo I don’t mess around.


Necessary bird picture


Jupiter temple that from the sketch


Toilets from the sketch


Necessary latte picture


All the sewer grates in Rome say SPQR which is something to do with the ancient roman government. It’s a little over the top I think.

Happy Easter!

Back in Denmark just in time for Easter and a bit of sunshine. 

Apparently in Denmark they celebrate Easter with ham and schnapps. The Jesus thing is tertiary.  

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