No Swedish Fish in Sweden!?!

IT’S AN ABOMINATION. Shouldn’t they give you a complimentary pack upon your arrival?

Nah, I’m just kidding. Sweden was great!! We did try to find some Swedish Fish so we could check “eating Swedish Fish in Sweden” off of our bucket list – but since we were unsuccessful, we’re just going to have to prepare a little better and go back. Which would be super easy, since the train ride to Sweden was 45 minutes. It takes me longer to get to Philly.

Although devastated by the lack of Swedish fish, my friends and I found plenty of cool stuff to do. After our 10AM arrival in Malmö, we visited the nearby castle-turned-museum and its beautiful gardens. We wandered through Swedish streets under a lovely blue sky (such a nice break from the Copenhagen grey), and shop-hopped. (<– I made that word up. Think testing wacky make-up, browsing Scandinavian furniture, and getting matching rings from H&M.)

We ran into a wicked good street band, took a train to Lund to see the discovery-place of dopamine (our neuroscience friend was so excited), and drank hot chocolate in the shadow of a cathedral. It was one of the most wonderful days of the semester so far. And as a sidenote: nobody checked our passports. Lotta freedom within that Schengen area.

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Day Trip to Sweden

Me & Tia (the neuroscience friend) on the train to Sweden

Me & Tia (the neuroscience friend) on the train to Sweden

 

The gardens!! Can you see the windmill in the background?

The gardens!! Can you see the windmill in the background?

My friend Kelsey looking super cute in front of some street art

My friend Kelsey looking super cute in front of some street art

This band (theoriginalfive.se) played bluegrass music that made me feel like I was back home in South Carolina. They were really, really good live - and they played on top of this truck, so extra cool points

This band (theoriginalfive.se) played bluegrass music that made me feel like I was back home in South Carolina. They were really, really good live – and they played on top of this truck, so extra cool points

Serene church window in Lund

Serene church window in Lund

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Life Outside of Studio*

When I wasn’t holed up in studio this week (hahahahahaha so rare), I did some excellent, non-architecture, low-pressure activities!

My Danish class took a field trip to Christiania. Christiania probably – no, definitely deserves its own post. It’s a self-governing area (borough?) of Copenhagen. A little bit artsy, a little bit unruly, a lotta hippie. No photos are allowed within Christiania becauseeeee a lot of illegal activity takes place within the gates. The main street within the village (neighborhood?) is called Pusher Street. Because they push marijuana. More on all that later.

During that same field trip, we climbed the spire of the Church of Our Saviour. So high such small stairs so high I wasn’t nervous no vertigo SO HIGH.

I booked flights to London. And Dublin (watch out Lindsay here I come).

In honor of last week’s experiment (Is There Such A Thing As Too Much Schwarma): this week I attempted to order my pita in Danish. The guy behind the counter thought it was very amusing. I ended up with the wrong type of meat, but other than that I’d say it was a solid first step. (Plus: is there really a wrong type of meat when getting schwarma? So really just it’s a win-win all around.)

For our weekly LLC activity, we went to a concert in a church that had been converted into a bar/lounge. I’m so mad at myself for not bringing my camera. I can’t show you how awesome it was, so you’ll just have to take my word for it. We had a buffet dinner of chili and corn chips and sat alongside the wall, listening to some pretty sappy love songs (we loved it).

I accidentally hit two of my friends with my bike. (shhhhh that’a a secret, don’t tell anyone. Braking is so much harder than it seems.)

I got my Danish residence card and signed up for the Danish healthcare! Woo hoo! No photos of this card are allowed ever because I look awful in the ID photo.

This weekend we are taking a day trip to Sweden and packing for our first travel break. This break is my core course study tour – I’m going to Austria, Switzerland, and Germany! (Did I tell you they just threw Germany in? Third country bonus? I guess you can do that when you’re traveling around Europe.) I’m so excited – I’ll let you know how it all goes!

Also – the DIS AD Department has its own blog. The blog is written by our department head, Henning, and last week he featured my group in his article about core course week!

*A better architecture student would probably say that there isn’t any life outside of studio, not really.

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Weekly Adventures

Tia & Christiania posters

Tia & Christiania posters

This photo is not related to any activity (although it was taken within the photo-permissible zone of Christiania).

This photo is not related to any activity (although it was taken within the photo-permissible zone of Christiania).

Steps of the spire at Christ Our Savior Church

Steps of the spire at Christ Our Saviour Church

Railing detail of Christ Our Savior Church spire

Railing detail of Christ Our Saviour Church spire

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Arch Project: the Process

Ah, I’m sorry I don’t have better photos of the project process. But this is what studio is like:

Travis & Sarah working on their models.

Travis & Sarah working on their models.

Shiv studying his presentation board.

Shiv drafting his presentation board.

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Arch Project: the Site Visit

We started the architecture project with a site visit. The visit was really important for grasping scale, context, landmarks, pathways/movement, etc. We took a lot of notes – did a lot of sketching – and used this information to create site analyses.

I think it’s super cool that our project was based on a real space. Our designs could be implemented.

This pattern underneath the arch is really beautiful, and a lot of students chose to feature it in their design.

This pattern underneath the arch is really beautiful, and a lot of students chose to feature it in their design.

I included this picture for scale... can you see how small it is?!

I included this picture for scale… can you see how small the arch space is?!

Marie Louise (our professor) explaining the project during our site visit.

Marie Louise (our professor) explaining the project during our site visit. The factory behind her was designed by Arne Jacobsen, a famous Danish architect.

Me & Adrian working through the site diagrams. Guess what? Adrian goes to Dickinson!! (Which is in Carlisle, my kind-of hometown. He and I share  a love for Massey's ice cream = instant friends.)

Me & Adrian working through the site diagrams. Guess what? Adrian goes to Dickinson!! (Which is in Carlisle, my kind-of hometown. He and I share a love for Massey’s ice cream = instant friends)

 

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Second Studio Project (!!)

PHEW.

I am sitting at the kitchen table in my LLC, eating a bowl of shabbily made cous cous, and feeling so extremely relieved. Three hours ago I presented my first solo architecture project, and, miracle of all miracles, it was OK.

As a brief project description: we were instructed to put an art gallery, mezzanine, café, bathroom, and covered seating area in/around an archway. This archway, located under a train track in an up-and-coming neighborhood of Copenhagen, is super duper extra itzy-bitzy small.

How we felt when starting the architecture project

when we started the architecture project

Over the course of five weeks, we made seven models (it’s a process, says the professor), researched similar existing buildings, drew plans, colored site diagrams…. We stayed up late measuring windows and cutting out doors .We discovered that the local grocery store sells half-price pastries after 9PM. We threw each other masking tape and made fun of project slogans. (Movement, community… voyeurism? Puh-lease, girl. Go for “transparency” instead.)

I learned that supergluing your fingers together is, thankfully, fixable – and that sleeping is optional when a critique looms in the future.

Critiques are exactly what they sound like. I gave a 15 minute presentation, using my model and presentation board as tools to explain the inspiration, process, and vision behind my project. Two professors and one guest critic (!!) asked me questions and provided feedback. The AD students presented in groups of five or six, and the whole nerve-wracking ordeal (which accounts for 30% of my studio grade!) lasted only two hours.

firstworldproblemsgirl

critique week (*Caroline exaggerating everything*)

It feels so, so good to have completed an architecture project – even if I have a long way to go before I design an actual building. We’re celebrating the end of our first Danish architecture project tonight, and then – GUESS WHAT – I’m going to bed early. As in, before midnight – not when the sun is coming up. Cheers, team.

PS. This article from Buzzfeed

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Another Great Week in Copenhagen!

YAY so many cool things happened in the past week!!

1. We kayaked through the waterways of Copenhagen and didn’t get hit by the water taxis. Go us.

2. I met my Visiting Family!! (I keep accidentally calling them my host family, but I’ve really only met them for lunch.) Britta & Ole live an hour outside of Copenhagen by bus, and they have two daughters – Sofie and Marie, both adopted from China but fully Danish. Sofie was so shy! We ate open-faced sandwiches, took a walk through the park, got Sofie ready for her date, and went to a greenhouse/nursery!

3. A bunch of girls from my LLC had this brilliant idea to visit the cemetery in Copenhagen at night – it’s a park and it’s open to the public but WHO REALLY WANTS TO GO AT NIGHT. They do, that’s who. We sat by H.C. Andersen’s grave and Askhi told us super spooky ghost stories. And then we heard a rustle in the bushes and ran out before the headless horseman could get us.

4. We did experiments to see if there’s such a thing as “too much kebab”. Results = no.

5. My business class met with Volvo to start our semester-long consulting project for the company. It’s serious stuff. We had to sign a non-disclosure agreement and everything, promising we wouldn’t breathe a word of all the cool ideas we’re going to give them. (Sidenote: I am really, really, really glad I’ve already done a consulting project with The Space. #whywofford)

5. I discovered Cocio, Danish chocolate milk. So much goodness, so little time.

6. We had a Danish night! Quite the party. Our common room was covered in Danish flags and full of Danish people. Meatballs + charades + badly spoken Danish + cake = so much fun.

7. I’ve been working on my second architecture project, so I’ve spent a lot of time in the studio – building models, bonding with other unfortunate souls, sharing extra-strength tacky glue, and crafting really excellent Spotify playlists. My final presentation is this week! I’ll let you know how it goes.

Until then, vi ses!

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Danish night at Skindergade 14. Our SRA Nina decorated the common room and set up this beautiful table. She brought a bunch of her friends over and sprinkled them in-between the Americans for the seating arrangement during dinner. She cooked us traditional Danish food, too! Meatballs and potatoes YUM.

Danish night at Skindergade 14. Our SRA Nina decorated the common room and set up this beautiful table. She brought a bunch of her friends over and sprinkled them in-between the Americans for the seating arrangement during dinner. She cooked us traditional Danish food, too! Meatballs and potatoes YUM.

This restaurant was so hole-in-the-wall small that they gave a discount if you took the super yummy porridge to go.

We went to this restaurant on Saturday night. It was so hole-in-the-wall small that they gave a discount if you took the super yummy porridge to go.

Britta took us to a Danish greenhouse, in search of specific type of long grass - the visit reminded me SO much of going to the Amish nurseries in central Pennsylvania with Dad.

Britta took us to a Danish greenhouse, in search of specific type of long grass – the visit reminded me SO much of going to the Amish nurseries in central Pennsylvania with Dad.

A Danish architecture field trip! This is Zach. He's sketching. (So much sketching!! All the time!!) This building, Torpedo Hall, was a military repair dock for submarines and torpedoes. Now it's an apartment complex.

A Danish architecture field trip! This is Zach. He’s sketching. (So much sketching!! All the time!!) This building, Torpedo Hall, was a military repair dock for submarines and torpedoes. Now it’s an apartment complex.

A satellite office of Volvo, where we learned about our super-secret project.

The Copenhagen satellite office of Volvo, where we learned about our super-secret consulting project.

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About Last Week

Hej guys!

All is dandy in the Land of the Danes. We just finished up Core Course Week, which (for me) was a whole week devoted to my architecture studio. The first half of the week was spent in Copenhagen, sketching cool facades and listening to lectures and exploring the city. The second half of the week (Thursday – Saturday) was spent traveling around Western Denmark on one of those embarrassingly large, yellow, sleep-even-if-your-neck-breaks tour buses and attempting to draw absolutely everything.

We stayed in hostels, ran through rainbow mist, canoed, and looked at buildings until we couldn’t possibly look or think about buildings any more. It was GREAT.

PS. Today is a super special day because it’s littleA’s birthday! My sister is the bomb and she catches the spelling mistakes on my blog. I’m very lucky. Happy Birthday, chica.

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