Denmark, May-June 2003
The coast of Denmark is no less than 5000 miles and the number of
islands no less than 500!
Exploring all this is no less than quite an achievement - and yet that is what the Travelling Bears have been working on! First Bornholm, Jutland and Læsø - now the southern sea of islands in May and June.
In May Olivia, Tom, Irving & Erasmus went to Copenhagen. Later, McBear and Roger joined them from Ireland, and we all went to see the viking shipyard in Roskilde. Then we toured the southern part of Denmark with its tiny islands and wonderful castles.
Click each photo to enlarge
We stayed at an Bed & Breakfast in Lyngby, a suburb just north
of Copenhagen. One evening we watched a program on tele about bears.
It was very interesting, but Irving kept saying "Cool, man!". Well, Irving is excused; he's still learning English, and he must have picked up the expression from somebody, but Olivia was giving out to him for bad manners.
Frederiksborg Castle, May 2003
In Hillerød, the main town in County Frederiksborg, we walked by the wonderful fairytale castle Frederiksborg. The castle was built by Christian IV around the 1620's. Olivia said that Roger once had visited the castle long ago.
Having visited Newgrange in Ireland, Tom wants to settle down as a tourist guide. Trying this hi-tech, electrified train - the S-train of Copenhagen - he also considers becoming a loco driver.
Roskilde Viking Shipyard, May 2003
When Roger learned that the Danes were building the world's largest
viking ship; an exact copy of a viking ship built in Dublin 1040 and
later found in Roskilde Fjord, he insisted on going to visit the shipyard
and inspect the work.
Here, Roger is wearing a brand new T-shirt in connection with the Special Olympic Games in Ireland 2003. Roger said, that celebrities like him should always support events like that.
Roger and McBear did a thorough inspection of the planks - real
oak planks - and they were impressed by the quality of the ship.
"Well Done!" Roger said to the craftsmen. "I am looking forward to seing you, when the ship according to plan will arrive in Dublin in 2007."
Before we left, we saw a great deal of viking ships around the harbour and shipyard. McBear was wearing his new sun glasses.
Rudkøbing Harbour, May 2003
We went to the small islands south of Sealand. In Rudkøbing
the weather was lovely with no wind at all. Roger was interested in
studying how captains in these narrow and shallow waters maneuvre
the ferries. Roger got very impressed as the captain only slowed down
a little and then simply broadsided the ferry into the narrow slot!
"Well done!" Roger shouted to the captain.
We arrived Ærø and went to our Bed & Breakfast
just outside the ship yard town of Marstal. McBear and Roger got
a fright as they were approached by a
huge viscious monster. Then they heard somebody crying.
"Come here, little pussycat!"
"A kitten!" Roger said. "It was just a kitten! I was prepared to punch the dragon!
Lindsbjerg hills, May 2003
We heard that there were burial mounds on Ærø. Tom, who knows about passage tombs like Newgrange in Ireland, wanted to excavate a site called Lindsbjerg. - If only Barnaby had been here, Tom said. Barnaby would have been hyper! Searching for a dolmen, Roger and Tom forced their way through the dense vegetation. Poor McBear had a tough time and couldn't see a thing.
Finally, we discovered a dolmen and Tom did some studies. Poor McBear was exhausted and Tom had to help him climb all the way to the top.
Søby Harbour, May 2003
We later went on a visit to the harbour in a little town called Søby (meaning Lake town). Roger got excited about all the ships, and he shouted to and greeted captains on the various ships. McBear got a bit embarrased and pretended he didn't know Roger.
There were lovely beaches around Ærø. On one of them we decided to built our own harbour with a pier. McBear said he would think of the best way to construct the harbour. Roger and Tom started collecting huge rocks, and we spent most of day working on the harbour.
Wet Water, May 2003
Suddenly, a big burst of wind pushed Roger, so he stumbled and fell into the water! He had to be rescued immediately. No time for a photo! McBear and Tom watched as Roger was sitting on a warm stone, getting dry.
In Marstal there are many tallships, and Roger got all excited. This day in
particular, there were a lot of Dutch tall ships visiting Marstal.
"Pity I don't speak Dutch", Roger said. "Now, I can't give them great advice on how to maneuvre a tall ship".
Marstal, May 2003
Just as we were walking around the harbour, another Dutch tall ship arrived.
"Ah!" Roger sighed. "It all reminds me of my past on the seven seas...."
"Yawn-yawn", McBear said and walked on.
On Fyn (or Funen in English) we visited the wonderful fairytale castle, Egeskov (the name meaning Oak Wood as it's said to have been built on trunks from an entire forrest of oak trees). Franz Brockenhuus had it built around 1550; and it's one of the first renaissance castles in Denmark. Roger felt a bit disappointed that the present count didn't invite us for tea.
Egeskov, June 2003
Around the castle is a museum, and here we discovered an old
fighter aircraft. McBear said it was a RF35 Draken photo reconnaisance
built by Saab in Sweden and used within the Royal Danish Air Force
until around 1995, and it was a super sonic aircraft capable of
doing just over mach 2. Roger got very impressed.
"How do you know so many technical details?"
"Brain", McBear giggled. "Brain!"
Check out the map of Denmark