Eranthis hyemalis

This yellow little flower makes me happy. If I had a favourite color, yellow might be it.

Eranthis hyemalis

I am joining the #WeeklySmile bunch, as I wholeheartedly agree with the host, Trent, that we need some positive posts in between all the serious stuff in the news and on the web. Give someone a smile today, and see what happens!

Care to join us at the #WeeklySmile ? Then go to Trent’s World  and join the LINK UP!

Older entries in the #WeeklySmile:

I haven’t killed anyone!

Turkey smiles


Spanish Smiles


Against the Odds


Still got the blues

As the two-months long Polar night just ended, Longyearbyen entered the blue period. And my longing for the cold, but oh so magical, island grows.









I am so glad we got to visit Egypt before the trouble there started! Although they do not advise against travelling to the tourist-sites in Egypt, I would opt it out. Thus, I am happy I already crossed it out of my bucket list. Been there, got the pics to prove it!


We went there in Des 2009, when the Karate Kid was 8 years old. I am considering writing a series of blogposts from Egypt, but right now I’ll only share pictures of some big friggin’ things:


From this position we had good oversight of the Pyramides


The Greatest _______ in the World


Hamlet’s Elsinore

Yes, this place actually exists! Except the castle’s name is not Elsinore, it is Kronborg Slot (added to the UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites list in 2000). You can come and see for yourself, it is in the town of Helsingør, Denmark, on the northeastern tip of the island of Zealand at the narrowest point of the sound, (Øresund) between Denmark and Sweden. The sound is here only 4 kilometers (2.5 mi) wide, so a fortification here has always had an immense strategic and economic importance, and it has been repurposed several times throughout the years.

The castle dates back to a stronghold, Krogen, built in the 1420s by King Eric VIII (Eric of Pomerania*). King Frederick II** transformed the stronghold into a Renaissance Castle from 1574 to 1585. Much of the castle was destroyed in a fire in 1629, but King Christian IV subsequently had it rebuilt.

*Related reading: Roskilde Cathedral, King Pantsless, where Erik of Pomerania becomes King through adoption by King Pantsless (Margrete I)

**Related reading: Roskilde Cathedral – The Renaissance Ruler, about Frederick II and his young Queen.

Per a legend linked to Arthurian myth, a Danish king known as Holger the Dane, was taken to Avalon by Morgan le Fay. He returned to rescue France from danger, then traveled to Kronborg castle, where he sleeps until he is needed to save his homeland. He mst be knackered and overworked to sleep this long! His beard has grown to extend along the ground. A statue of the sleeping Holger has been placed in the castle.


Holger the Dane

The Ballroom was, when it was completed in 1582, the largest hall in Northern Europe. It measures a whopping 62 x 12 meters. The present floor and fireplaces are from the rebuilding 1924-38.

The chapel was inaugurated in 1582, but in 1785, as the castle was being fitted for use as army barracks, the chapel was fitted out as gymnasium and fencing hall, and the furniture was stored away. In 1838, the chapel was refurnished with the original furniture, and reinaugurated in 1843.

The Swedish army besieged and conquered the castle during the Dano-Swedish War of 1658-60, and the castle was deprived of many of its most precious art works. The Swedish conquest demonstrated that the castle was far from impregnable, so after the castle was back on Danish hands, the castle defenses were strengthened scientifically. After their completion, Kronborg was considered the strongest fortress in Europe.

From 1739 until the 1900s, Kronborg was used as a prison, and the inmates worked on the castles fortifications. From January 17, 1772 to April 30, 1772, Kronborg was the place of imprisonment of Queen Caroline Mathilde***, following the scandal of her affair with Johann Friedrich Struensee.

***Related reading: Royal Shenanigans, where I tell the story of the Royal infidelity that landed the young Queen in prison.

***Related reading: Roskilde Cathedral – Power struggles and insanity, the story of the mentally ill King, the imprisoned Queen’s hubby.

We do have to talk about Hamlet, William Shakespeare’s famous tragedy, which is set here at Kronborg. In the play, it is called Elsinore, though that is actually the anglicized name of the surrounding town Helsingør. The play has been performed several times in the courtyard and at various locations on the fortifications. For those of you that are dire Hamlet-fans, here are some famous Hamlets:

The castle was opened to the public in 1938, and they host a fantastic Christmas Marked two weekends in December every year. I absolutely recommend visiting Helsingør and Kronborg Castle. And should you happen to be in the area in December, make sure you visit the Christmas Marked!

The Greatest Castle in the World

Me gusta Valencia, The Oceanographic and the Prince Felipe Museum of Science

When in Valencia you’d be well advised to spend a day at the Oceanographic and travel around the planet’s main seas and oceans. It is quite big, so a full day will be needed at this magic place. There are several places to eat in the park, but none offer great culinary experiences.

The Prince Felipe Museum of Science is also very much so worth a visit – especially with kids! Maybe not the youngest kids, but let’s say from 6-7 years and up to the teens. It is an interactive and elicit place. It’s great fun.

If none of the above-mentioned activities interest you, you should still go there just to see the cool architecture:


Me gusta Valencia, the Cathedral

When in Valencia, I will recommend a visit to the Valencia Cathedral, bearing this impressive name in Spanish: Iglesia Catedral-Basílica Metropolitana de la Asunción de Nuestra Señora de Valencia (English: The Metropolitan Cathedral–Basilica of the Assumption of Our Lady of Valencia). If you relish historical works of art, this is your spot!

The cathedral is a Roman Catholic parish church, consecrated in 1238. It was built over the site of the former Visigothic cathedral, which under the Moors had been turned into a mosque. The predominant style is Valencian Gothic. The cathedral contains numerous 15th century paintings, and the Santo Càliz de Valencia (English: Holy Chalice of the Cathedral of Valencia). This chalice is recognized by the Vatican as a historic relic, although not as the actual chalice used at the last supper.


Two Statues



Welcome to this week’s #WeekendCoffeeShare!

Maybe this week we will meet for lunch at a cozy Danish café for a bite and warm beverage. We are having crappy weather with rain, rain and some more rain. It feels even shittier, because my Facebook wall is currently being filled with gorgeous snow-pictures from my Norwegian friends, along with a myriad of hyperboles on how much fun it is to shovel snow… Well, I’m not falling for it! I will however admit to thinking snow is very pretty.

It is this crappy weather and changing seasons that brings me to think about the joke I am about to share with you this Saturday:

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There are two statues in a park; one of a nude man and one of a nude woman.

They had been facing each other across a pathway for a hundred years, when one day an angel comes down from the sky and, with a single gesture, brings the two to life.

The angel tells them, «As a reward for being so patient through a hundred blazing summers and dismal winters, you have been given life for thirty minutes to do what you’ve wished to do the most.”

He looks at her, she looks at him, and they go running behind the shrubbery.   The angel waits patiently as the bushes rustle and giggling ensues.   After fifteen minutes, the two return, out of breath and laughing.

The angel tells them, «Um, you have fifteen minutes left, would you care to do it again?”

He asks her.   “Shall we?”

She eagerly replies, «Oh, yes, let’s!   But let’s change positions.   This time, I’ll hold the pigeon down, and you shit on its head.”

Care to join us at the #WeekendCoffeeShare ? Then go to  Parttime Monster Blog and join the link up!

Want to see my previous contributions to the #WeekendCoffeeShare? They are funny, I promise:

Haunt much?

Most of the time

… So Tired!

Handegg (and why Sir Nerdalot is in the dog house)

The Doc’s in!

Fall Folly


An Irishman goes into a bar…

Once in a lifetime

Sausage much?

Brexit explained

The Nerve!

Brexit Tea


Trouble is my middle name

We should not sleep away the summer night

Diet much?

Wolf Whistle much?

An eggy conundrum

Happy Mother’s Day!


Nice to meet you

Coffee and taxes

read my blog


14917267_10154344610811622_2277339575043380159_oThis past week there has been alot of smiles. Of course, Halloween being the reason for many of the smiles in my household. Halloween is not really a Norwegian or Danish thing, but it is getting more and more common. Of course there are valid arguments on both sides of whether or not we should import traditions from abroad. I guess I have landed on the pro-Halloween side, because I do not think it hurts anyone to dress up and have a little fun. To hand out some lollipops while complementing the fantastic costumes is not what I consider a nuance – but rather fun. It’s not like you are being bludgeoned to hand out candy. Unfortunately, they had terrible weather this year for trick or treat. Of course, Old Mamasan made Pumpkin pie, and the Karate Kid did a fantastic job decorating, don’t you think?

Tivoli in Copenhagen takes it all out for Halloween, and it is so much fun! This year, we went twice! Actually, the Kid went three times, as he went with the people from church on Sunday, in addition to the two times with us. We all just love seeing the decorations and the lights. I hope the pics convey some of the ambiance and god times this time of year in Tivoli. Of course it is pure chaos in Tivoli in the weekends, so do yourself a favor and visit on the weekdays.

(Those of you who notice that Sir Nerdalot is looking a tad less fuzzy in some of the pics, yes, he shaved for Movember and is now growing a stache :-))

Oh, another reason for me to smile is that I have finally got an idea for my NaNoWriMo-book. It might not be a great idea – but it is an idea, no matter how crappy 🙂


I am joining the #WeeklySmile bunch, as I wholeheartedly agree with the host, Trent, that we need some positive posts in between all the serious stuff in the news and on the web. Give someone a smile today, and see what happens!

Care to join us at the #WeeklySmile ? Then go to Trent’s World  and join the LINK UP!

Older entries in the #WeeklySmile:

Spanish Smiles



Me Gusta Valencia, Town Hall Square


Now, should you visit Valencia at one of the many, many feasts and holidays they celebrate here, then la Plaza del Ayuntamiento (Town Hall Square) is the place to be. During Fiestas and Fallas, the entire place is bursting with energy and spectacular mascletas (pyrotech).

Also, should you be here and there being NOT a fiesta, rest assured that the plaza is a popular meeting point for Valencians and is often filled with stalls selling flowers. A local tradition that dates back to 1924.

Our hotel was at la Plaza del Ayuntamiento, and was a great starting point for us exploring the lively, narrow lanes of Valencia’s Old Town.

As the name reveals, Plaza del Ayuntamiento is home to some of the most representative administrative buildings in Valencia, and features an outstanding mix of Spanish architectural styles. Dominating the square are the stunning neoclassical Town Hall (Ayuntamiento) and the magnificent Central Post Office (Edificio de Correos), designed by architect Miguel Angel Navarro in a beautiful eclectic style that combines striking Modernista features with lavish baroque-inspired interiors.

Check back later for more posts from this magnificent city! Also, check the previous posts:

Spanish Smiles

Me Gusta Valencia, Mercado Central

Me Gusta Valencia – The Silk Exchange

Flamenco is not just a bird!