Welcome to Copenhagen and to my first blog post in Denmark! After traveling through Friday night into the late afternoon of Saturday, I arrived safely in Copenhagen with all of my luggage (thankfully)!
Both that first day and first full day, Sunday, were spent getting to know the other American students in the DIS program that live in the same Kollegium as I do. Now I’m sure most of you are wondering what a “Kollegium” is, but there doesn’t seem to be a definitive English translation. I describe it as a simple dormitory that could be found on most American college campuses with a long hallway, rooms off of the hallway for one or two students to have their own rooms and bathrooms, and a common area that includes a kitchen and living space for everyone on the hallway to hangout.
What makes a Kollegium special is the fact that any student studying in Copenhagen can live there, as well as any international students. Our hallway is compromised of 2 Americans (my roommate and myself), 1 Australian, and at least 6 other Danish students that I’ve met so far. The Kollegium also has a laundry facility, gym, study space, and even a bar in it which makes it a nice place where all of my basic needs are taken care of. What’s unique is that this is a great opportunity to meet young Danish students and learn more about their lifestyle while also learning how to be more independent on my own. For example, I have to cook all of my own meals which seems like I might have bitten off more than I can chew at the moment (ha ha). BUT I am excited to test my cooking skills and improve them over my semester here as I cook food that I know and try different Danish delicacies.
While cooking might prove to be challenging, navigating public transportation is also a new adventure for me to explore during my time in Copenhagen. Since the only means of transportation at my home is driving a car, I love how many options I have here in Copenhagen. Walking, biking, taking a bus, or taking a train are all possible though it will take some time to get used to it so I don’t get on a bus going the wrong way again.
The past few days have been challenging both physically, mentally, and emotionally, but as my parents have reminded me, and as I’ve started to discover, that that is to be expected when moving to a new place whether its your first semester in college or a semester abroad. Walking around the city today was great because it gave my friends and I some confidence that we wouldn’t be completely helpless during our time here, plus we got to visit a few classic tourist spots. With new adventures and discoveries everyday, it seems like the panic I had the first few hours in this new country are subsiding and I might just be able to survive my semester here while truly enjoying it.